The Problem:

The dental school requirement to collect human teeth and a requisite number of them has proven to be quite difficult to meet for most students. An alternative is to use plastic teeth to serve as proxies for actual human teeth. This presents a problem of its own in that plastic teeth are not visible radiographically. Dental students typically evaluate their work by viewing the teeth upon which they are working radiographically.    Plastic teeth, being much less radiopaque, provide significantly less feedback to the students with respect to the quality of their work. This is due to a relative inability to accurately interpret radiographs resulting from poor detail in radiographs. Accordingly, it would be desirable to increase the radiopacity of plastic teeth so that students can make a more accurate assessment of their work.


The Technology:

Researchers in the College of Dentistry at the University of Tennessee have developed a product which can be applied to the plastic teeth to allow students to evaluate their work radiographically. This novel composition, referred to as Radiosil, significantly enhances the radiopacity of plastic teeth. See figure 1.


Radiosil is a simple, quick, and easy composition that can be applied to plastic teeth.  It can be painted on to make a uniform covering of the plastic roots which then allows the student to evaluate his or her work radiographically.  Furthermore, Radiosil can be easily removed if the tooth is to be evaluated. Also, it can be easily applied to fixed and removable prosthetic appliances for radiographic indexing.  Once applied, Radiosil sets at room temperature within about 20 minutes after exposure to air. Increasing the temperature of an object treated with Radiosil can decrease the time required for it to set. Specifically, at a temperature of about 150°F, Radiosil sets in about 10 minutes.  Moreover, the inventors have developed a product which greatly enhances the radiopacity of objects that are not naturally radiopaque.



Figure 1. Exemplary radiographic images of plastic teeth with and without treatment with Radiosil. A) Pre-operative buccal-lingual images of plastic teeth without B) and with Radiosil; C) Pre-operative mesial-distal images of plastic teeth without and D) with Radiosil; E) Working film without and F) with Radiosil.



Features and Benefits:

•       Significantly enhances radiopacity of non-radiopaque objects

•       Easily removed from object

•       Allows for better quality radiographs and reduces X-ray exposure time


Patent Information: