Background: This article constitutes a partial update of the original systematic review evidence by Yengopal et al. from 15 January 2008 (published in the Journal of Oral Science in 2009) with primary focus on research quality in regard to bias risk in trials. Its aim is to update the existing systematic review evidence from the English literature as to whether caries occurrence on pits and fissures of teeth sealed with either GIC or resin is the same.
Methods: In addition to the 12 trials included during the original systematic review, 5 new trials were identified during the database search (up to 26 August 2010) and 2 further trials were included from a hand search and reference check. Of these, 3 trials were excluded and 16 were accepted for data extraction and quality assessment. The quality of accepted trials was assessed, using updated quality criteria, and the risk of bias was investigated in more depth than previously reported. In addition, the focus of quantitative synthesis was shifted to single datasets that were extracted from the accepted trials.
Results: Twenty-six dichotomous and 4 continuous datasets were extracted. Meta-analysis and cumulative meta-analysis were used in combining clinically homogenous datasets. The overall outcome of the computed datasets suggest no difference between the caries-preventive effects of GIC- and resin-based fissure sealants.
Conclusions: This overall outcome is in agreement with the conclusions of the original systematic review. Although the findings of the trials identified in this update may be considered to be less affected by attrition- and publication bias, their risk of selection- and detection-/performance bias is high. Thus, verification of the currently available results requires further high quality randomised control trials.