Lin, P.-Y., Cheng, Y.-W., Chu, C.-Y., Chien, K.-L., Lin, C.-P., Tu, Y-K.

Aim: Dentin hypersensitivity, caused by the exposure and patency of dentinal tubules, can affect patients’ quality of life. The aim of this study was to undertake a systematic review and a network meta-analysis, comparing the effectiveness in resolving dentin hypersensitivity among different in-office desensitising treatments.

Materials and methods: A literature search was performed with electronic databases and by hand until December 2011. The included trials were divided into six treatment groups as: placebo; physical occlusion; chemical occlusion; nerve desensitisation; laser therapy; and, combined treatments. The treatment effects between groups were estimated with standardised mean differences by using a Bayesian network meta-analysis.

Results: Forty studies were included. The standardised mean difference between placebo and physical occlusion was −2.57 [95% credible interval (CI): −4.24 to −0.94]; in placebo versus chemical occlusion was −2.33 (95% CI: −3.65 to −1.04); in placebo versus nerve desensitization was −1.72 (95% CI: −4.00 to 0.52); in placebo versus laser therapy was −2.81 (95% CI: −4.41 to −1.24); and, in placebo versus combined treatment was −3.47 (95% CI: −5.99 to −0.96). The comparisons of the five active treatments showed no significant differences.

Conclusions: The results from network meta-analysis showed that most active treatment options had significantly better treatment outcome than placebo.

Journal of Clinical Periodontology 2013; 40 (1): 53-64.