Lasers Med Sci. 2023 Oct 25;38(1):242. doi: 10.1007/s10103-023-03915-x.
The aim of this study is to assess the influence of various Er:YAG laser energies on dentin surface micromorphology and dentine-resin shear bond strength (SBS). Eighty dentin specimens were prepared and divided randomly into ten groups: control group (CG), phosphoric acid-etched group (AG), four laser-conditioned groups treated with various pulse energies of 40, 60, 80, and 100 mJ (L40, L60, L80, L100), and four laser-conditioned acid-etched groups (LA40, LA60, LA80, LA100). Two specimens from each group underwent scanning electron microscopy examination, while the remaining six were subjected to the dentin-resin SBS test. Statistical analyses included Welch’s analysis of variance (ANOVA), followed by post hoc Tamhane’s T2 multiple comparisons test, Pearson’s correlation, and Fisher’s exact test. Pulse energies of 60, 80, and 100 mJ fully exposed the dentin tubule orifices, although 100 mJ lead to microcracks. Laser-conditioned surfaces exhibited smaller tubule diameters compared to acid-etched surfaces, and tubule diameters positively correlated with dentin-resin SBS. Laser-conditioned groups showed lower SBS values, while laser-conditioned acid-etched groups demonstrated higher SBS values. No significant relationship was observed between dentin surface roughness and SBS. The range of laser energies used for dentin conditioning had limited effects on SBS or failure modes. Laser conditioning with energies ranging from 40 to 100 mJ effectively removes the smear layer from the dentin surface. However, to enhance dentin-resin bond strength, further acid etching of the laser-conditioned surface is necessary.