Objective: The effects of resin infiltration and microabrasion on incipient carious lesions by surface microhardness, roughness and morphological assessments, and resistance to further acid attack of treated lesions were evaluated.
Material and methods: Eighty artificially-induced incipient lesions were randomly divided into five groups (n = 16): resin infiltration with an adhesive resin (Excite F, Ivoclar Vivadent, Schaan, Liechtenstein), resin infiltration with a resin infiltrant (Icon, DMG, Hamburg, Germany), microabrasion without polishing (Opalustre, Ultradent, South Jordan, UT, USA), microabrasion with polishing (Opalustre, Ultradent, Diamond Excel, FGM, Joinville, SC, Brazil), and distilled water (control group). All specimens were exposed to demineralization for another 10 d. Microhardness, roughness and morphological assessments were done at baseline, following initial demineralization, treatment and further demineralization. Data were analysed by the Kruskal-Wallis, Friedman's and Bonferroni tests (p < .05).
Results: Enamel lesions treated with resin infiltrant and microabrasion demonstrated similar hardness values, with a nonsignificant difference compared with sound enamel. Resin infiltration demonstrated lower roughness values than those of microabrasion, and the values did not reach the values of sound enamel. Further demineralization for 10 d did not affect the hardness but increased the roughness of infiltrated and microabraded enamel surfaces. Polishing did not influence the roughness of microabraded enamel surfaces. After resin infiltration, porosities on enamel were sealed completely. The surface structure was similar to that of the enamel conditioning pattern for microabraded enamel lesions.
Conclusions: Within the limitations of this study, the icon infiltration and microabrasion technique appeared to be effective for improving microhardness. Icon appeared to provide reduced roughness, although not equal to sound enamel. Further research is needed to elucidate their clinical relevance.
Keywords: Dental caries; enamel microabrasion; hardness; tooth demineralization.