How accurate are TheraMon® microsensors at measuring intraoral wear-time? Recorded vs. actual wear times in five volunteers
BACKGROUND: The TheraMon® microsensor is the most recent device developed to measure the wear-time of removable appliances. The accuracy has not been validated intraorally. OBJECTIVES: To determine 1) if the TheraMon® microsensor accurately records time when fixed intraorally, and 2) the effect of the intraoral location on the recorded time. METHODS: A prospective pilot study, using a convenience sample, was carried out in a UK hospital orthodontic department. Five non-patient volunteers wore microsensors positioned palatal to an upper molar, and buccal to a lower molar for 7 days. Differences between actual amount of wear and the wear recorded by each device were calculated. Differences between sites were also examined. RESULTS: The mean daily wear-time recorded by the upper and lower microsensors combined was 23 hours (95% CI 22.6-23.4), which is a mean under-recording of 4% (CI 2.5-5.8%). The maximum daily under-reporting of wear times was 5.5 hours. Microsensors in the lower buccal sulcus recorded wear-times that were closer to actual wear-times. CONCLUSIONS: Assumptions made by the TheraMon® microsensors software lead to under-reporting of intraoral wear-time, particularly when placed palatally. These discrepancies could be significant in both clinical practice and research. Adjustment of the microsensor software parameters would improve accuracy, irrespective of the intraoral location.
Brierley, Catherine A
Sandler, Paul Jonathan