• proximal caries;
  • SS-OCT;
  • in vivo;
  • bitewing radiograph;
  • sensitivity;
  • specificity;
  • ROC analysis


The aim of this study was to determine the diagnostic accuracy of swept-source optical coherent tomography (SS-OCT) in detecting and estimating the depth of proximal caries in posterior teeth in vivo. SS-OCT images and bitewing radiographs were obtained from 86 proximal surfaces of 53 patients. Six examiners scored the locations according to a caries lesion depth scale (0–4) using SS-OCT and the radiographs. The results were compared with clinical observations obtained after the treatment. SS-OCT could detect the presence of proximal caries in tomograms that were synthesized based on the backscatter signal obtained from the proximal carious lesion through occlusal enamel. SS-OCT showed significantly higher sensitivity and larger area under the receiver operating characteristic curve than radiographs for the detection of cavitated enamel lesions and dentin caries (Student's t -test, p < 0.05). SS-OCT appears to be a more reliable and accurate method than bitewing radiographs for the detection and estimation of the depth of proximal lesions in the clinical environment. (© 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim)