Development of a novel intraoral measurement device to determine the biomechanical characteristics of the human periodontal ligament.
Periodontal diseases like gingivitis and periodontitis have damaging effects on the periodontium and commonly affect the mechanical properties of the periodontal ligament (PDL), which in the end might lead to loss of teeth. Monitoring tooth mobility and changes of the material properties of the PDL might help in early diagnosis of periodontal diseases and improve their prognosis. It was the aim of this study to develop a novel intraoral device to determine the biomechanical characteristics of the periodontal ligament. This includes the measurement of applied forces and resulting tooth displacement in order to investigate the biomechanical behaviour of the periodontium with varying loading protocols with respect to velocity and tooth displacement. The developed device uses a piezoelectric actuator to apply a displacement to a tooth''s crown, and the resulting force is measured by an integrated force sensor. To measure the tooth displacement independently and non-invasively, two magnets are fixed on the teeth. The change in the magnetic field caused by the movement of the magnets is measured by a total of 16 Hall sensors. The displacement of the tooth is calculated from the movement of the magnets. The device was tested in vitro on premolars of four porcine mandibular segments and in vivo on two volunteers. The teeth were loaded with varying activation curves. Comparing the force progression of different activation velocities, the forces decreased with decreasing velocity. Intensive testing demonstrated that the device fulfils all requirements. After acceptance of the ethical committee, further testing in clinical measurements is planned.
Journal of Biomechanics
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