Oral Health Group

Could a mouthful of squid ink replace painful dental probes for gum disease?

September 11, 2017
by PBS NewsHour

It’s one of the worst parts of a dental checkup — painful probing with sharp instruments to look for signs of gum disease. The time-consuming and sometimes bloody process keeps patients fearful, hygienists frustrated, and dentists worried they might be missing important symptoms.

Now a nanoengineer in San Diego says he’s got a possible solution. It involves imaging gums after patients swish around a mouthful of squid ink.

Jesse Jokerst, a professor at the University of California, San Diego, whose research includes finding new medical uses for ultrasound, was at his dentist getting scraped, poked, and prodded when he realized there just had to be a better way.

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This story was first published on Sept. 7, 2017 by STAT. Find the original story here.