Perioral Aerosol Sequestration Suction Device Effectively Reduces Biological Cross-Contamination in Dental Procedures

Eur J Dent. 2021 May;15(2):340-346. doi: 10.1055/s-0041-1724152. Epub 2021 Mar 12.


Objective: The infection risk during dental procedures is a common concern for dental professionals which has increased due to coronavirus (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) pandemic. The development of devices to specifically mitigate cross-contamination by droplet/splatter is crucial to stop infection transmission. The objective of this study is to assess the effectiveness of a perioral suction device (Oral BioFilter, OBF) to reduce biological contamination spread during dental procedures.

Materials and methods: Forty patients were randomized 1:1 to a standard professional dental hygiene treatment with OBF and without. Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) bioluminescence assay was used to evaluate the spread of potential contaminants. The total number of relative light units (RLU) from key dental operatory locations: operator's face-shield, back of the surgical operator's-gloves, patient's safety-goggles, and instrumental table were measured. Percentage contamination reductions between control and OBF were compared.

Statistical analysis: Primary outcome, total RLU, was analyzed by comparing the means of logged data, using a two-sided two-sample t-test. Secondary outcomes as RLU of logged data for the different locations were analyzed in the same way. Proportion of patients from whom different locations reported events (clean, acceptable, and failure) were analyzed by using Fisher's exact test.

Results: For the whole dental environment, RLUs reduction (<150 units) achieved with OBF was 98.4% (97.4-99%). By dental operatory location the reduction in RLUs was from 99.6%, on the operator face-shield, to 83% on instrumental table. The control group reported a very high percentage of failures, (>300) being 100% on the surfaces closer to the patient's mouth and decreasing to 70% on instrumental table. In contrast, the higher failure percentage in the OBF group was found on the patient's goggles (40%), while the operator face-shield showed an absence of contamination.

Conclusion: OBF device has shown efficient reduction of biological aerosol cross-contamination during dental procedures as proved by ATP-bioluminescence assay. Nevertheless, for maximum safety, its use must be combined with standard protective gear such as goggles, face shield, and surgical gloves.

Grants and funding

Funding The study obtained its funding from University of Barcelona Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences Barcelona, Catalunya, ES.