Author(s): Lee SJ, Wu MK, Wesselink PR
AIM: To compare the ability of syringe irrigation and ultrasonic irrigation to remove artificially placed dentine debris from simulated canal irregularities within prepared root canals.
METHODOLOGY: After canal enlargement, twelve canines were split longitudinally into two halves. On the wall of one half of each root canal a standard groove of 4 mm in length, 0.2 mm in width and 0.5 mm in depth was cut, 2-6 mm from the apex, to simulate uninstrumented canal extensions. On the wall of the other half, three standard saucer-shaped depressions of 0.3 mm in diameter and 0.5 mm in depth were cut at 2, 4 and 6 mm from the apex to simulate uninstrumented canal irregularities. Each groove and depression were filled with dentine debris mixed with 2% NaOCl to simulate a situation when dentine debris accumulates in uninstrumented canal extensions and irregularities during canal preparation. Each tooth was re-assembled by reconnecting the two halves, using wire and an impression putty material. Two per cent NaOCl was then delivered into each canal either using syringe irrigation (n = 8) or using ultrasonic irrigation (n = 8). Before and after irrigation, images of the two halves of the canal wall were taken, using a microscope and a digital camera, after which they were scanned into a PC as TIFF images. The amount of remaining dentine debris in the grooves and depressions was evaluated by using a scoring system between 0-3: the higher the score, the more the debris. The data were analysed by means of the Mann-Whitney U-test. RESULTS: Both forms of irrigation reduced the debris score significantly. The debris score was statistically significantly lower after ultrasonic irrigation than after syringe irrigation (P = 0.002 for grooves, P = 0.047 for depressions).
CONCLUSION: Ultrasonic irrigation ex vivo is more effective than syringe irrigation in removing artificially created dentine debris placed in simulated uninstrumented extensions and irregularities in straight, wide root canals.