The Biocompatibility test for Dental Materials is to determine how great of an immune reaction a patient will have to a dental material. Or Simply put, we are trying to determine if there is an allergy to a Dental Material. A blood sample is taken, placed and spun in a centrifuge to separate red blood cells and platelets from blood serum. The red blood cells and platelets are removed from the serum. The serum contains antibodies and other blood proteins that may react to dental materials. A small sample of the serum is then mixed with the individual samples of different dental materials. Each test sample of serum and the dental material is observed to see if the patient has an immune response to the dental materials.
The Biocompatibility Test is a known type of test called a fall-out reaction. The extent of the fallout reaction or the reaction to a dental material is measured by an optical instrument called a spectrometer. The spectrometer measures the extent of the patients reaction to the different dental materials. This dental material testing process was developed and refined over a period of years by Dr. Hal Huggins. The patient reactions to the materials are graded in intensity as mild, moderate or severe.
The Biocompatibility Test is done by Biocomp Labs in Colorado Springs, CO. The blood can be drawn up in our office and sent to Biocomp Labs for processing. The Biocompatibility Test is often the key to solving odd failures and symptoms patients can be experiencing in the dental office. For example patients can have teeth where the pulp dies after multiple crowns and the problem may be a Nickel allergy to the metal in the crown. Implant Failure may be a sensitivity to Titanium. Systemic toxicity and lab values to thyroid hormone levels and acute onset high blood pressure can be caused by sensitivity to Root Canal Filling material. Some Patients also react to some of the chemicals common to composite filling materials. The Biocompatibility Test truly has medical value in the dental office and is an invaluable tool in a holistic dental practice.