Caries Management by Risk Assessment (CAMBRA)
You, and everyone you know has over 500 different kinds of bacteria living in their mouths right now. CAMBRA (Caries Management by Risk Assessment) is a new dental system that measures the population of each kind of bacteria (every patient is different), scoring the patient's risk of decay (caries) and then making a matching action plan for their future dentistry. Transformation Dental Partners now offers the service free to all patients.
The importance of this new system reveals itself when a patient needs a crown, onlay, bridge or veneer. "Patients who are assessed as high risk are more likely to have tooth decay develop underneath crowns," explains Dr. Milos Boskovic, Transformation Dental Partners prosthodontist. "Based on the patient's specific bacterial profile, CAMBRA helps us treat the cavity-causing bacterial infection and create a treatment plan that lowers the risk of a crown failing because of underlying decay."
Dr. Ivanka Srbinovska, also of Transformation Dental Partners says, "CAMBRA can be compared to the extensive evaluation that a patient would have completed before a stent or an artificial valve were placed in that patient's heart or blood vessels. The aim is to protect the patient's health and, of course, their pocketbook." According to Nasseo, Inc., manufacturer of dental implants, dental implant failure and replacement costs due to bacterial infection are nearly one billion dollars per year.
Dr. Boskovic and Dr. Srbinovska mimic the cardiologist’s risk assessment techniques. "Based on risk factors for caries disease, we perform tests for oral bacteria levels as well as take x-rays," remarks Dr. Boskovic. "We then examine disease indicators and risk factors such as the level of current decay, current bacterial profiles, decay history, eating habits, medications the patient is taking, saliva flow, medical conditions, and oral hygiene habits," comments Dr. Srbinovska.
We then make recommendations for ongoing treatment based on the above risk factors. Patients at high risk may require medical intervention in the form of oral rinses, gels and sprays. They may also require restoration of any existing tooth decay. High-risk patients may also be advised to delay desired, but not medically necessary, cosmetic dental work such as porcelain crowns or veneers. Orthodontics may also be delayed until risk levels can be decreased.
"It's simply a commitment that we have made to our dental patients' lives and overall health. It's the right thing to do," states Dr. Boskovic.