Is CBCT clinically effective, cost-effective and safe compared with standard extraoral and intraoral radiography in the diagnosis of hard tissue pathology in routine dental practice?


This work was undertaken in response to an enquiry from the Scottish Dental Public Health Quality Improvement Group. It is intended to provide an overview of the evidence base, including gaps and uncertainties, and inform decisions on the feasibility of producing an evidence review product on the topic.

Conclusions and results

A recent guideline (2012) produced by the European Commission was identified (prepared by the SEDENTEXCT consortium). This provides guidance on CBCT for dental and maxillofacial radiology. It is based on a systematic review of the literature up to October 2010, and is of good quality (although the included evidence is mostly lower level studies). Most of the information included in this scoping report comes from the guideline.

For this scoping report, a search was carried out to identify literature published since this guideline, identifying a further systematic review and 19 primary studies.

Recommendations (if any)

Technologies scoping reports do not make recommendations for NHSScotland. See SHTG Advice Statement 012/13.


Systematic search of the secondary literature was carried out between 17–18 April 2013 to identify systematic reviews, health technology assessments and other evidence-based reports. Medline, Medline in process, Embase, Cinahl and Web of Science databases were searched for systematic reviews and meta-analyses. The primary literature was systematically searched between 28–31 May 2013 using the following databases: Medline, Medline in process, Embase, and Cinahl. Results were limited to English
language from 2010 onwards, in order to update a guideline identified from the secondary literature search.

Key websites were searched for guidelines, policy documents, clinical summaries and economic studies.

Further research/reviews required

Written by
Doreen Pedlar, Project Co-ordinator, HIS, Scotland.

INAHTA Brief issue: 2013/002

Agency: HIS, Healthcare Improvement Scotland
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Technologies scoping report 21 (no ISBN number for this publication);  

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