Caries Assessment Spectrum and Treatment (CAST): A Novel Epidemiological Instrument
SourceCaries Research, 51, 5, (2017), pp. 500-506
Article / Letter to editor
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SubjectRadboudumc 0: Other Research RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences
Caries detection is fundamental to understanding the oral health status of a population and is the basis for caries diagnosis for individual patients. Although different caries detection/diagnosis criteria are available, none of them include the total spectrum of dental caries (which ranges from a sound tooth to a tooth lost due to caries) other than the Caries Assessment Spectrum and Treatment (CAST) instrument. The CAST codes and descriptions were submitted to experienced epidemiologists from across the world for obtaining face and content validity. Its construct validity and reproducibility under field conditions were tested in child and adult populations, and showed a high level of agreement between examiners. Compared to what is usually reported in the literature, CAST provides more relevant information on caries prevalence, experience, and severity. CAST is straightforward and easy to use. A manual with valuable information about how to apply CAST and report its results has been published in order to facilitate communication among researchers, oral health planners, and medical professionals. Feedback from researchers indicates that CAST is considered an asset and that reporting results after using CAST is uncomplicated. More research about the effects of CAST in different cultures and age groups is required.
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