Comparison of the microbial load of incoming and distal outlet waters from dental unit water systems in Istanbul

Turetgen I. , Goksay D. , Cotuk A.

ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING AND ASSESSMENT, vol.158, pp.9-14, 2009 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 158
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10661-008-0560-7
  • Page Numbers: pp.9-14


This is a cross-sectional study of the incoming and distal outlet water quality from 41 dental units in Istanbul, carried out to compare the total microbial loads using traditional culture method versus epifluorescence microscopy. The possible presence of Legionella pneumophila using traditional culture method was also analyzed. One hundred and twenty three samples were taken from the high-speed handpiece lines, air-water syringe lines and source (incoming) water supplies from 41 dental units. The samples were assayed for live/dead bacteria, heterotrophic bacterial counts and presence of L. pneumophila bacteria. Thirty nine out of 41 dental units (91%) were not able to meet the standard limit of 200 CFU/ml in dental unit waters. The live bacterial counts were 1-1.5 orders of magnitude higher than aerobic mesophilic heterotrophic bacteria. L. pneumophila (serogroup 2-14) was isolated from five out of 41 units. Some dental units were using commercially bottled (19 l) drinking water as a source. The source water of eight dental unit was heavily contaminated which were fed up by commercially bottled drinking water.