Pulp Vitality Testing

Laser Doppler is considered more reliable than sensory testing for pulp vitality testing. This is because there can be adequate vascularisation to support tooth pulp vitality even when sensation is lost due to nerve damage. Blood flow is assessed by placing laser Doppler probes in contact with the teeth, typically using a dental putty splint to support the probe.

The graph below illustrates a simultaneous comparison of blood flow in Vital and Non Vital teeth. Further confirmation can be obtained by using FFT analyses of the blood flow recording to investigate the presence or absence of the cardiac pulse.

Equipment Recommendations

We typically recommend moorVMS-LDF (single channel, or dual for direct tooth comparisons), together with VP3 needle probes for front tooth assessment and VP5 for rear teeth. Our moorVMS-PC software features FFT and wavelet analyses to assess the strength of the pulsatile component of the flow signals.

Laser Doppler Monitor

Advanced, laser Doppler blood flow and temperature monitor

moorVMS-LDF2 | Laser Doppler Monitor

What Next?

Contact us to discuss your specific needs and to request your copy of our free Application Note which includes a detailed experimental method and practical suggestions. We also offer no obligation on-site visits so you can test the equipment in your facility.


Chen, E., and Abbott, P. V. (2011).
Evaluation of accuracy, reliability, and repeatability of five dental pulp tests.
Journal of Endodontics, 37(12):1619-23.

Mesaros, S., Trope, M., Maixner, W., and Burkes, E. J. (1997).
Comparison of two laser Doppler systems on the measurement of blood flow of premolar teeth under different pulpal conditions.
International Endodontic Journal, 30(3):167-74.

Roeykens, H., and De Moor, R. (2011).
The use of laser Doppler flowmetry in paediatric dentistry.
European archives of paediatric dentistry, 12(2):85-9.

Roeykens, H., Van Maele, G., Martens, L., and De Moor, R. (2002).
A two-probe laser Doppler flowmetry assessment as an exclusive diagnostic device in a long-term follow-up of traumatised teeth: a case report.
Dental traumatology, 18(2):86-91.

Zerari-Mailly, F., and Braud, A. (2012).
Glutamate control of pulpal blood flow in the incisor dental pulp of the rat.
European Journal of Oral Science, 120(5):402-7.