Objective: To report (1) the caries experience prevalence and mean, and the caries severity and distribution patterns, expressed clinically and combined with radiographs with the conventional and ICCMS™ systems in young children from Bogotá, Colombia; (2) the contribution of including radiographs to the clinical caries scoring and (3) in which surfaces the radiograph adds to the clinical caries registration.
Material and methods: Six hundred children from kindergartens/schools were enrolled: Cohort A: 2-year (n = 200), Cohort B: 4-year (n = 200) and Cohort C: 6-year (n = 200) olds. Radiographs were taken of the 4- and 6- year olds. Children were examined clinically using the Clinical (C) and Radiographic (R) ICCMS™-epi Caries Scoring Systems, staging caries lesions (d) as: Initial (Cepi/RA), Moderate (CM/RB) or Extensive (CE/RC). Caries experience including missing (m) and filled (f) surfaces was expressed as follows: clinical conventional (CdMEmfs); clinical ICCMS™ (CdepiMEmfs); combined conventional (C + RdMEmfs) and combined ICCMS™ (C + RdepiMEmfs).
Results: The prevalence of CdMEmfs was: Cohort A: 32%; Cohort B: 59%; Cohort C: 67.5%, increasing to 73.5%, 99.8% and 100%, respectively, with the C + R depiMEmfs. The CdMEmfs means doubled when initial caries lesions (Cdepi) and radiographs (R) were included. The d component corresponded to over two-thirds of the caries experience. Findings on the radiographs significantly raised caries experience prevalence and means (p < .02), detecting primarily approximal lesions. Surfaces with highest caries frequency were occlusal/approximal of molar teeth and buccal of upper incisor teeth.
Conclusion: Participants' caries experience was high. The radiographic assessment significantly contributed to caries experience. Molar and upper incisor teeth were most prone to caries.
Keywords: Dental caries; ICCMS™; epidemiology; primary dentition; radiography.