To investigate the performance of multiple Light-curing Units (LCUs) of different manufacturers used in a dental student clinical setting.


Manufacturers claim that the irradiance values of the LCUs stay stable over time. However, this may not be accurate among the different units.


This study investigated the performance in terms of the irradiance, radiant exposure, and DOC of multiple LCUs of different types used in a dental student clinical setting.


Four different LCU were investigated (n=5 units/LCU manufacturer): three Light-Emitting-Diodes (LED) units (Demi Ultra, Mini LED, and E-Morlit) and one quartz-tungsten-halogen (QTH) (PolyluxII). Irradiance and radiant exposure were collected [Managing Accurate Resin Curing-Patient Simulator (MARC-PS)] (n=5 readings/unit/tooth). Depth of Cure (DOC) was performed (ISO 4049:2009 standards) using a micro-hybrid composite (n=5/unit). Data were analyzed using Kruskal-Wallis and ANOVA followed by Student-Newman-Keuls and Tukey post hoc methods, respectively (α=0.05).


Using the MARC-PS anterior and posterior teeth sensors, respectively, the mean irradiance (mW/cm2) for Demi Ultra was (1625.7±38.8) and (1250.4±25.2); Mini LED (1381.1±37.8) and (1058.1±27.3); E-Morlit (1831.1±294.7) and (1545.2±176.0); and Polylux II (932.4±368.5) and (840.4±353.4)mW/cm2. The radiant exposure range was 16-38 J/cm2 for all LCUs. LCUs’ mean DOC ranged from 2.9 to 3.1 mm. Significant differences in irradiance and radiant exposure values were detected among the multiple units and manufacturers. Significant differences in DOC values among the Demi Ultra and Polylux II units were detected. DOC met the standards except for one Polylux II unit.


The irradiance and radiant exposure values were not the same among the different units, regardless of the manufacturers’ claim of the irradiance values stability over time. Polymerization was not compromised except for one QTH unit per the DOC measurements. Itis highly recommended to closely monitor LCUs used in dental student clinical areas due to the high demand in this type of setting.

Keywords: Dental Curing Lights, Light-curing units, Quartz-tungsten-halogen, Light-emitting-diode, Irradiance, Radiant exposure, Depth of cure, Multiple light-curing units.
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