The ability of fluoride-releasing resins to inhibit dentin demineralization remains controversial. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the caries inhibition of resin composite restorations with an experimental fluoridated hydroxyethyl methyl methacrylate (HEMA) and water wetting agent. Standardized Class V preparations were placed in 40 molars, the gingival margin placed below the cementoenamel junction. Two dentin primers (sodium fluoride, HEMA and water; HEMA and water) were placed in equal numbers of 20 preparations, then One-Step® Dental Adhesive (Bisco) was applied as recommended by the manufacturer, followed by the placement of a resin composite restoration. Amalgam restorations with no primer/adhesive were placed in 10 preparations and 10 preparations were restored by placing One-Step® Dental Adhesive, then resin composite. All teeth were subjected to an artificial caries challenge (pH 4-4) for 5 days. Results demonstrated the mean areas (μm2 ± s.d.) of demineralization 100 μm from the restoration/dentin margin to be: amalgam 5570 ± 873; One-Step® 7038 ± 2099; HEMA and water 6126 ± 634; fluoridated HEMA and water 3411 ± 593. ANOVA and Duncan's test (P < 0.05) demonstrated the fluoridated HEMA and water wetting agent to have significantly less adjacent dentin demineralization than the other three groups. Eighty percent of HEMA and water wetting agent, 80% of One-Step® Dental Adhesive and 100% of amalgam restorations demonstrated wall lesions. One hundred percent of restorations with fluoridated HEMA and water wetting agent demonstrated inhibition zones in adjacent dentin.
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