Effect of stress on acid dissolution of enamel

D. Palamara, J. E.A. Palamara, M. J. Tyas, M. Pintado, H. H. Messer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Objectives: This study was designed to measure the dissolution of buccal enamel of extracted teeth exposed to acid with or without simultaneous cyclic occlusal loading. Methods: Twenty mandibular premolars were mounted in pairs in a servohydraulic testing machine, and immersed in 1 % lactic acid (pH 4.5) or water. One tooth of each pair was subjected to cyclic loading (100 N at 2 Hz for 200,000 cycles), with the load applied at 45° to the tooth axis on the buccal incline of the buccal cusp. The second tooth of each pair was immersed in acid but not subjected to load. Control teeth were immersed in water, with one tooth of each pair undergoing cyclic loading. Impressions of the teeth were taken before and after exposure to acid and occlusal loading, and a profiling system was used to measure the depth and volume loss of enamel on the buccal surface. Results: The depth of enamel dissolved ranged from approximately 50-200 μm. In certain locations teeth undergoing cyclic loading during acid exposure showed greater volumetric loss than teeth not subjected to load. Loaded teeth showed a complex pattern of enamel dissolution; volumetric loss in the cervical third was greater than in the middle third, and was much greater in the mesiobuccal segment (under tension) than in the distobuccal segment (under compression). Unloaded teeth showed greater volumetric loss in the cervical third than in the middle third, with a uniform pattern of enamel dissolution from mesiobuccal to distobuccal aspects. Significance: Enamel dissolution is increased significantly in sites subjected to cyclic tensile load.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)109-115
Number of pages7
JournalDental Materials
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2001

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Based on a thesis submitted by Dr D. Amagarn to The University of Melbourne in fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. The study was supported by The Government Employees Medical Research Fund. The photographic support of Mr Chris Owen is also gratefully acknowledged.

Copyright 2005 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam. All rights reserved.


  • Abfraction
  • Cervical tooth lesions
  • Enamel
  • Tooth flexure


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