Molar incisor hypomineralisation in Lebanon: prevalence and clinical characteristics

Eur Arch Paediatr Dent. 2020 Oct;21(5):609-616. doi: 10.1007/s40368-019-00505-w. Epub 2019 Dec 21.


Background: Molar incisor hypomineralisation (MIH) is a qualitative enamel developmental defect affecting 1-4 first permanent molars and sometimes the permanent incisors. MIH is extremely widespread around the world and presents a considerable clinical problem in paediatric dentistry. Although, little prevalence data exist for Middle East populations including the Lebanese one.

Aim: The objectives of this study were to investigate the prevalence of MIH in 7-9-year-old Lebanese children, with relevance to gender, jaw and side distribution, and to assess the clinical status, extent and severity of MIH lesions of the affected teeth.

Design: Representative sample (n = 659) of 7-9-year-old Lebanese children attending private and public schools distributed throughout Lebanon was examined for MIH. Clinical status, extent and severity of MIH lesions on FPMs and permanent incisors were scored using the short-form grading method (MIH index) of Ghanim et al. (Eur Arch Paediatr Dent 16:235-246, 2015).

Results: An overall MIH prevalence of 26.7% was reported with no significant predilection for girls over boys. 52.8% of the cases present with only molars and. 47.2% with both molars and incisors and did not present any significant difference between upper and lower jaws (P = 0.325). Left-side FPMs were more affected than the right ones (P = 0.0218). Central incisors were significantly more affected than the laterals in both jaws (P < 0.0001). Maxillary central incisors were significantly more affected than their mandibular counterparts (P < 0.0001). Most of the clinical status was demarcated opacities extended on less than the third of the tooth surface. The extent of lesions correlated significantly with the number of affected molars. Most of the affected teeth presented with mild defects and the degree of severity was not correlated with gender but significantly increased with age.

Conclusions: MIH is prevalent in Lebanon. Further studies are required to analyse the possible systemic and environmental etiologies among Lebanese children.

Keywords: Characteristics; Lebanon; MIH index; Molar incisor hypomineralisation; Prevalence.

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Dental Enamel Hypoplasia / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incisor
  • Lebanon / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Molar
  • Prevalence