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Cosmetics pump up flat figures

U.S. Census Bureau data suggest that dental industry revenue has hit a patch of slow growth, but a survey of cosmetic dentistry suggests that sector is booming. Dental office revenue increased 4.4% between 2005 and 2006, according to the most recent data from the Census Bureau, up from $83.7 billion to $87.4 billion. That compares to a 6.1% increase between 2004 and 2005 and a nonweighted average growth of more than 6.4% since 2000. Altogether, dental office revenue accounts for about 5.5% of what the Census Bureau refers to as the "healthcare and social assistance sector."