Purpose: This study determined the effect of saliva contamination and cleansing solutions on microtensile bond strengths of self-etch adhesives to dentin. Materials and Methods: Seventy-five human molars were ground flat to expose mid-coronal dentin and randomly assigned to five groups (N = 15): no contamination, saliva contamination without cleansing, saliva and cleansing with water, saliva and cleansing with 2% chlorhexidine, and saliva and cleansing with 5% sodium hypochlorite. One-third of the specimens in each group of 15 were bonded with Adper Prompt L-Pop (all-in-one self-etch adhesive; 3M ESPE, St. Paul, MN, USA), one-third with Adper Easy Bond (all-in-one self-etch adhesive; 3M ESPE), and one-third with Clearfil SE Bond (self-etch primer system; Kuraray America, New York, NY, USA). Specimens were restored with composite and processed for microtensile bond strength testing (5-6 rods/tooth). Results: Mean bond strengths ranged from 17.3 MPa for Adper Prompt L-Pop after water cleansing to 69.3 MPa for Clearfil SE Bond after water cleansing. For all three adhesives, there was no statistically significant difference in bond strengths between the saliva contaminated group, the cleansing groups, and the no contamination groups. Conclusions: Neither saliva nor the cleansing solutions adversely affected bond strengths of the self-etch adhesive systems.
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