Document Type



Localized hypoplasia of the labial surface of deciduous canine teeth is a widely reported enamel defect, the etiology of which remains enigmatic. Published frequencies for this defect are based on small or biased samples from prehistoric and clinical contexts. In this study I report the prevalence and pattern of expression of this defect among 113 schoolchildren of Harappa village, Punjab Province, Pakistan. The labial surface of deciduous canines of children between the ages of 5 and 8 years was examined using a penlight; age, sex, stature, and socioeconomic status were also recorded. The defect occurs in 34.5% of the subjects studied and in 14.6% of the teeth examined. No significant association was found between the presence of the defect and gender, socioeconomic status, stature, or side of the jaw. The hypoplastic lesion occurs more frequently in the mandible than in the maxilla, and bilateral expressions are less common than unilateral expressions. These results confirm specific aspects of earlier studies and imply that localized (circular) enamel hypoplasia of deciduous teeth, unlike linear enamel hypoplasia, is not a marker of systemic growth disruption.