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Aim & Objectives: The aim and objective of this clinical & radiographic study were to estimate the prevalence of distal caries in mandibular second permanent molars in the presence of partially/ completely impacted mandibular third molars.
Materials & Methods: The present study was done in 520 patients with an impacted lower third at the Department of OMFS at JSSDC&H, Mysuru. The participants were clinically & radiographically assessed by using IOPA. The angulations of impacted lower third molar and the extent of caries on the distal surface of the lower second molar were recorded and evaluated by using the chi-square test. The value of P < .05.
Results: 32.3% of males had distal caries of the second molar as compared to females with only 13.8%. There was no significant association between age groups and caries presence. The mesioangular type of impacted LTM was associated with distal caries in 69% of cases. The horizontal type of impacted LTM had caries of the second molar in 24.5% of cases. The distal and vertical type of impacted lower third molars were associated within 5.5% and 1% respectively. In 76% the caries of the second molar did not involve the pulp compared to 24% of cases having deep caries with pulpal involvement.
Conclusion: The mesioangular followed by horizontal type, then disto-angular and vertical of impaction of lower third molars showed caries in the lower second molar. A study involving correlation of the oral hygiene and early caries detection tools shall be more valid in this regard.