January 2022

The network's 2021 Year in Review

Despite having to deal with yet another year of COVID-19 ramifications, the network continued to be very productive. Given that our over-arching goal is to improve the nation’s oral health by improving the knowledge base for everyday clinical decision-making and moving the latest evidence into routine care, much was accomplished. For example,

·      in 2021, study results were published in 10 peer-reviewed scientific publications.

·      on October 29, 2021, the network conducted its first virtual and interactive national practitioner meeting. The meeting was highly successful, as reported in our November Newsletter.

·      in 2021, results from several of the network’s COVID-19 studies were presented during 5 national webinars, as well as other study results in numerous presentations.

·      six studies completed data collection in 2021, and good progress was made with developing an additional 11 (!) studies.

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Gregg H. Gilbert, DDS, MBA, FAAHD, FACD, FICD, National Network Director

With the launch of several new studies and planned presentations and publications from the network’s current studies, 2022 promises to be an exciting year. 

Thank you for making it happen!

2021 Publications Highlights

From the Cracked Tooth Registry Study, about 80% of teeth recommended at baseline for monitoring (instead of treatment) continued with a monitoring recommendation throughout the entire three years of the study. The survival rate for teeth with cracks exceeded 98%, and the failure rate for teeth that were treated restoratively was only 14%. Treatment failures were associated with intracoronal restorations (vs. full or partial coverage). As demonstrated by this publication and seven other network publications from this study, the bottom line is that dentists are quite good at evaluating patient-level, tooth-level, and crack-level characteristics to determine which teeth warrant treatment.

The network finished its series of articles from the Anterior Open Bite Study. The latest one had to do with treatment stability and patient satisfaction, finding that both were high, regardless of treatment or retainer modality.


The network’s most-recent publication from the study of non-surgical root canal therapy reported that pre-operative anesthesia failure ranged from 5% to 30%, depending on how failure is defined. Specific provider-level, patient-level, and tooth-level factors were significantly associated with failures.

Upcoming Studies

Post-Operative Pain - POPS

Aided by a mobile app, practitioners and patients undergoing potentially painful dental procedures will participate in this prospective cohort study to investigate presence, severity, and management of pain up to 3 weeks after the procedures.

Dental Implant Registry

Practitioners and patients with dental implants will participate in this prospective cohort study to create an implant registry and investigate the success of implant therapy over 3 years, as well as the rate of prosthetic and implant complications.

mDentistry e-Hygiene

Dentists, dental hygienists, and patients from the Network’s Northeast Node (only) will participate in this intervention study to investigate the acceptance of virtual dental examinations and patient self-taken intraoral photos.

Smoking Cessation - FreSH

To aid in the development of a clinical trial, practitioners from the Network’s Midwest node (only) and their patients who smoke will participate in a mixed-methods cross-sectional study to investigate their willingness to give away or receive free samples of nicotine replacement therapy, and their reactions to planned trial procedures.

Erosive Tooth Wear - ETW

Practitioners and their patients in the Southwest, South Central, and South Atlantic Regions (only) with erosive tooth wear will participate in a cross-sectional clinical study to investigate provider and patient perceptions of erosive tooth wear, identify detection thresholds, and estimate prevalence and risk factors for erosive tooth wear.

Mental Health Screenings - MSDP

Practitioners from the Network’s South Central node (only) will participate in this qualitative cross-sectional study to investigate barriers and facilitators for and the feasibility of implementing mental health screeners and treatment referrals into dental practice workflows.

If you are interested in participating, contact us! 

Improving the nation's oral health by improving

the knowledge base for clinical decision-making

and moving the latest evidence into routine care

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The National Dental Practice-Based Research Network is supported by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR), part of the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH)

(grants U19-DE-028717 and U01-DE-028727)

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