Author(s): Lee MT, Bird PS, Walsh LJ
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Abstract Because micro-organisms play a crucial role in the development of pulpal and periapical disease, the prognosis of endodontic therapy is intimately related to the presence of bacteria within the root canal system. Micro-organisms may persist in the apical region of the root canal system despite chemomechanical preparation. The usefulness of Class IV lasers (such as Nd:YAG, diode, KTP and Er:YAG) for photo-thermal disinfection of the root canal has been demonstrated in numerous studies. An alternative approach to microbial killing in the root canal system by laser light involves the use of low-power lasers to drive a photochemical reaction that produces reactive oxygen species, a technique termed photo-activated disinfection (PAD). By using exogenous photosensitisers such as tolonium chloride, killing of all types of bacteria can be achieved. In vitro studies of PAD have demonstrated its ability to kill photosensitised oral bacteria (such as E. faecalis), and more recently microbial killing in vivo in the root canal system has been demonstrated. While PAD can be undertaken as part of the routine disinfection of the root canal system, it also has potential use for eradicating persistent endodontic infections for which conventional methods have been unsuccessful.
This article was published in Aust Endod J
and referenced in Journal of Physical Chemistry & Biophysics