Journal of the Korean Academy of Pediatric Dentistry 2008;35(4):628-634.
Published online November 30, 2008.
Young-Han Ko, Byeong-Ju Baik, Jae-Gon Kim, Yeon-Mi Yang, Jeong-Geun Shin
Department of Pediatric Dentistry and Institute of Oral Bioscience, School of Dentistry, Chonbuk National University 
Correspondence:  Byeong-Ju Baik,  Tel: 063-250-2128, Email:
Received: 7 March 2007   • Accepted: 20 August 2008
In recent years, cross-contamination has become one of the noticeable issues in dental clinic. Two major routes of contamination are the direct-contamination through blood and oral secretion and the indirect-contamination through dental office equipments. Especially, air-contamination through air-floating pollutant in a confined space like hospital, and also contamination through aerosol ejected from high-speed handpiece in a dental office was interested. The purpose of this study was to understand risk of bacterial infection through aerosol from handpiece in a dental office, which will help the practitioner with prevention of contamination during dental treatment. The main findings are as follows. 1. In a comparative test, the group using handpiece has higher bacterial number than the group not using handpiece with significant statistical difference(P<0.01). 2. The group using handpiece with rubber dam has lower bacterial number than the group using handpiece without rubber dam with significant statistical difference(P<0.01). 3. Comparing the group using drainage water with the group using distilled water as a handpiece water source results in 22.4 cfu and 17.0 cfu respectively but the difference is no statistically significant(P>0.05). 4. Measuring cfu at 0.5m and 1.5m distance, 0.5m distance showed higher bacterial number with statistical significance(P<0.01). 5. Classification of bacterial types showed the largest bacterial number came from gram-positive micrococcus( 73.9%), and gram-negative micrococcus, gram-negative bacillus, and gram-positive bacillus follow in descending order.
Key Words: Handpiece aerosol, Airborne bacteria, Rubber dam

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