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SYSTEMATIC REVIEW Table of Contents   
Year : 2016  |  Volume : 27  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 91-99
Dental unit water lines decontamination with the aid of nanotechnology

Department of Periodontology, Krishnadevaraya College of Dental Sciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Rashmi Paramashivaiah
Department of Periodontology, Krishnadevaraya College of Dental Sciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0970-9290.179838

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Aim: This article reviews the issue of dental unit waterline (DUWL) contamination which affects all the clinical and hospital settings. The contaminating microorganisms commonly isolated from these settings and the most pathogenic among them have serious consequences. Over the years several measures are inculcated for decontamination of water, their advantages and shortcomings have been addressed. Options using nanotechnology which are available in the market are described briefly. Materials and Methods: A manual and electronic search was conducted. Google and PubMed were searched for relevant material from studies up to 2013. Medical Subject Headings words looked for were "Nanotechnology," "Water purification," and "Biofilms." Reviewed findings were summarized by topic, using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses statement for reporting. Seventy articles were shortlisted for articles pertaining to our topic of discussion. A systematic approach was followed by two independent reviewers and included eligibility criteria for study inclusion, data extraction, data synthesis, and drawing of conclusion. Results: Dental waterline contamination is widespread in any type of dental setting having serious implications on clinicians and patients alike, especially elderly and immune-compromised. Hence, international bodies like center for disease and control and American Dental Association have come up with stringent measures for maintenance of water quality. A gamut of procedures has been tried to overcome this problem ranging from chlorinated products, water filters to the usage of distilled water. The use of nanoemulsions, nanofilters, nanomembranes, etc., and their applicability for routine usage is discussed. Conclusions: Biofilm formation in DUWLs is inevitable with the subsequent release of part of microbiota into the otherwise sterile dental settings. These consequences can be quite serious on clinicians and dental patients. Though conventional measures in water decontamination have been partly successful, the quest for more foolproof methods has led to the use of latest technology, i.e., nanotechnology. The most practical option has to be chosen based on the ease of their usage.

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