Title: 0150 - Thermal Sensitivity Assessed With Simple Thermal Devices and Sophisticated Equipment


Melissa Ayranci, Academic Centre for Dentistry Amsterdam (ACTA)
Michail Koutris, Academic Centre for Dentistry Amsterdam (ACTA)
Frank Lobbezoo, Academic Centre for Dentistry Amsterdam (ACTA)
Peter Svensson, Aarhus University
Lene Baad-Hansen (Presenter)
Aarhus University


Objectives: The aim of this study was to compare the assessment of thermal sensitivity/pain in healthy humans with a thermotester and with simple easy-to-use thermal devices.

Methods: Twenty healthy volunteers participated in the study. The infraorbital region and the tip of the tongue were tested with the Medoc Pathway thermotester and simple aluminium thermal devices, with temperatures varying between 5°C - 50°C. A numerical rating scale (NRS) from 0-50-100 was used for rating the thermal sensitivity/painfulness. A control experiment was performed with 10 participants to test the potential impact of temporal summation of thermal stimuli.

Results: In the main experiment, the scores from the thermotester stimulation were higher than the scores for stimulation with the simple thermal devices for all temperatures, except 40°C, and at both test sites (P < 0.001). In the control experiment, there was no longer a significant interaction between device and temperatures at the infraorbital region. However, the scores with the thermotester at 50°C were significantly higher than those with the simple thermal devices at the tip of the tongue (P < 0.019).

Conclusions: Provided that temporal summation of the thermal stimuli was avoided, there were no major differences in thermal sensitivity/painfulness between the two different assessment methods at both test sites. Therefore, the simple thermal devices can be useful for assessment of thermal sensitivity in clinical settings without access to expensive sophisticated equipment.

Disclosure Statement:
The submitter must disclose the names of the organizations with which any author have a relationship, the nature of the relationship, and the clinical or research area involved. The following is submitted: None