Korean J Orthod.  2003 Aug;33(4):279-291.

A study on the effects of Electrical stimulation by the miniature Electric device on the tooth movement and tissue remodeling

  • 1Department of Orthodontics, College of Dentistry, Kyung Hee University, Korea. ygpark@khu.ac.kr
  • 2Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH. USA.


Electric current is a highly probable way as a clinical tool for tooth movement. The purposes of this study were to determine the usefulness of exogenous electric currents in accelerating orthodontic tooth movement and to investigate the effects of electric-orthodontic treatment on the remodeling of the periodontal tissue histologically. The study was performed with six male cats weighing around 3kg. The electric device which is providing the direct electric current of 20microA was inserted to the removable appliance. The right and left maxillary canines were assigned as control and experimental sides respectively. The control canine was provided with orthodontic force (75gm) only and the experimental side was given the same amount of force and electricity. The lingual buttons were bonded to the maxillary canines and both sides of canines were retracted with NiTi coil spring. The electric device was adjusted to provide 20microA direct current to the experimental canines 5 hours a day. The amount of the canine movement was measured with electronic caliper every week. After 4 weeks of tooth movement, the animals were sacrificed and the histologic study was performed. The results of this study were as follows : 1. The application of a direct current to the experimental tooth significantly increased the final amount of orthodontic tooth movement. The amount of tooth movement after 28-day was 37% more in the experimental side. 2. The electrically stimulated tooth showed histologic evidence of significant increases in the amount of bones and matrix deposition in the area of tension. 3. In the compression side, the electric-orthodontic treatment stimulated bone resorption more extensively in the experimental canines. 4. After 28 days of electricity exposure and orthodontic force, the experimental side demonstrated significantly more osteoblasts, osteoclasts, capillaries and osteoid tissues, reflecting an increase in the local tissue's cellular activity. 5. Intermittent electrical stimulation (five hours a day) had effects to enhance orthodontic tooth movement and tissue remodeling. These results suggested that the low-intensity exogenous electric current by the miniature electric device might accelerate orthodontic tooth movement and bone remodeling in vivo and have the possibility to reduce the orthodontic treatment duration.


Orthodontic tooth movement; Electric current; Tissue remodeling; Miniature electric device

MeSH Terms

Bone Remodeling
Bone Resorption
Electric Stimulation*
Tooth Movement*
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