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A new rule that would oblige dentists to use a heart monitor for patients under moderate sedation is being opposed by a group of professionals in Maine.
Some dentists in that state claim the extra requirement - which is the focus of an upcoming public hearing before the dental board - is too expensive and would also frighten people away from seeking treatment, the Bangor Daily News reports.
Moderate sedation is defined by the American Dental Association as drowsy but awake - and can be attained through oral, injected, intravenous or inhaled medication.
Supporters say it is a safety measure to protect patients. Maine is currently the only state that is considering such a step, which is also not included in the ADA's official recommendations.
It is the responsibility of state dental boards to set standards for anesthesia and sedation.
Dr Ted Morgan, speaking for those that oppose the rule, suggested that it would discourage dentists from treating anxious patients.
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