British company IDMoS plc has just released its CarieScan™ dental device for detecting caries, the cracks and irregularities within teeth. Having the advantage over X-rays of not exposing patients to radiation, but relying on electric impedance spectroscopy, this technology might catch on among the world’s dentists.
The technology, as explained by the company:
CarieScan technology is based on the ac impedance spectroscopy technique.
Impedance measurements have no effect on the sample being measured and changes in the physical structure of the sample can be related to its electrical behaviour. This method is therefore particularly suitable for medical applications.
The measurement relies on the application of a small ac signal through the tooth while monitoring the response to the sensor.
By changing the frequency of the applied signal, we can build up a spectrum of impedance points in a plot that is unique to the sample under investigation.