The ADA has approved the addition of a procedure and billing code for caries detection for its 2017 ADA Fee Guide. The code, “Non-ionizing diagnostic procedure capable of quantifying, monitoring, and recording changes in structure of enamel, dentin and cementum,” enables dentists to bill for exams that use the Canary System, effective January 1, 2017.
Developed by Quantum Dental Technologies, the Canary System is a non-ionizing diagnostic caries detection device that can quantify, monitor, and record changes in the structure of enamel, dentin, and cementum. Its crystal structure diagnostics lets users detect, image, and measure tooth decay on all surfaces, around restoration margins, and beneath opaque sealants in addition to detecting cracks in teeth.
However, the code might not cover other detection methods using visual examination, explorers and other tactile probes, fluorescence, or translumination with visible light (not near-infrared light) because of their inability to detect changes in all of the tissues or to record and quantify changes in those tissues.
“This billing code establishes the importance of ongoing examination of caries with appropriate modalities so that dentists can provide a wide range of treatment options and monitor outcomes,” said Dr. Stephen Abrams, president of Quantum Dental Technologies. “It offers patients and dentists another option that does not involve ionizing radiation to detect caries.”