Reproducibility and accuracy of the ICDAS-II for detection of occlusal caries in vitro

Caries Res. 2008;42(2):79-87. doi: 10.1159/000113160. Epub 2008 Jan 15.


Aim: The aim of this study was to assess inter- and intra-examiner reproducibility and accuracy in the detection and assessment of occlusal caries in extracted human teeth using a newly developed visual method for caries diagnosis (International Caries Detection and Assessment System, ICDAS-II). Serial sectioning and microscopy were used as the 'gold standard'.

Methods: The occlusal surfaces of 100 teeth were examined by 4 dentists using the ICDAS-II graded scores 0-6. Thereafter the teeth were serially sectioned and assessed for depth of the lesion with two histological classification systems.

Results: The weighted kappa values for inter- and intra-examiner reproducibility for the ICDAS-II examination were 0.62-0.83. There was a moderate relationship between the visual and both histological examinations (r(s) = 0.43-0.72). At the D1 diagnostic threshold (enamel and dentine lesions) specificity was 0.74-0.91 and sensitivity was 0.59-0.73. At the D3 diagnostic threshold (dentine lesions) specificity was 0.82-0.94 and sensitivity was 0.48-0.83 for the 4 examiners.

Conclusion: The ICDAS-II system has demonstrated reproducibility and diagnostic accuracy for the detection of occlusal caries at varying stages of the disease process which are comparable to previously reported data using similar visual classification systems.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Bicuspid / pathology
  • Dental Caries / diagnosis*
  • Humans
  • Internationality
  • Molar / pathology
  • Observer Variation
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity