Air Techniques Inc, Melville, NY, has announced that the Spectra, a handheld digital device to aid in the detection of caries visually, is now FDA-approved and available for sale. Spectra operates using fluorescence technology. LEDs project high-energy light with a wavelength of 405 nanometers onto the tooth surface, causing cariogenic bacteria to fluoresce red. In contrast, healthy enamel fluoresces green. The captured data is sent to the computer and the live image is presented on the monitor. Images can be saved to the patient record for future reference. With Spectra, the dentist can identify the exact location of potential carious lesions on tooth surfaces.

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