Andamuthu Yamunadevi1, Janardhanam Dineshshankar1, Safeena Banu2, Nilofar Fathima2, Ganapathy1, Thukanayakanpalayam Ragunathan Yoithapprabhunath1, Thangadurai Maheswaran1, Vadivel Ilayaraja1
1Department of Oral Pathology, Vivekanandha Dental College for Women, Elayampalayam, Namakkal, Tamil Nadu, India.
2Department of Undergraduate Dental Students, Vivekanandha Dental College for Women, Elayampalayam, Namakkal, Tamil Nadu, India.
Background: Dermatoglyphic patterns, which are regularly used in judicial and legal investigations, can be valuable in the diagnosis of many diseases associated with genetic disorders. Dental caries although of infectious origin, may have a genetic predisposition. Hence, we evaluated the correlation between dental caries and dermatoglyphic patterns among subjects with and without dental caries and evaluated its association with environmental factors such as salivary pH. Materials and Methods: Totally, 76 female students within the age group of 18-23 years were clinically examined, and their decayed, missing, filled teeth (DMFT) score and oral hygiene index-simplified were recorded. Based on their DMFT score, they were divided into following three groups; group I (n = 16, DMFT score = 0), group II (n = 30, DMFT score <5), and group III (n = 30, DMFT score ≥5). Their fingerprint patterns and salivary pH were recorded and analyzed using descriptive statistics. Results: Dermatoglyphic pattern distribution in caries-free group showed more ulnar loops than high caries group (group III) while high caries group showed more whorl patterns. Presence of whorl with double loop, whorl within a loop was associated with high DMFT score. The total finger ridge count was lower in caries group. The mean salivary pH was higher in caries-free group than high caries group. Thus, we conclude that dermatoglyphic patterns may be potential diagnostic tool for detecting patients prone to develop dental caries.
Keywords: Dental caries, dermatoglyphics, salivary pH.