Radiographic evaluation of root canal cleaning, main and laterals, using different methods of final irrigation

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the efficacy of passive ultrasonic irrigation (PUI) using intermittent or continuous flushing and conventional manual irrigation (CMI) on the cleaning of main and simulated lateral root canals.MATERIAL AND METHOD: The root canals of 24 artificial teeth were prepared and simulated lateral canals were made in the medium and apical thirds of the root. The specimens were divided into three groups: G1- CMI, G2- PUI 1 (intermittent flushing) and G3- PUI 2 (continuous flushing). Root canals were filled with contrast solution and the roots were radiographed pre- and post-irrigation. The digital images were transferred to Image Tool 3.0 software and the areas of root canal completely filled with contrast, and after irrigation with contrast remnant, were measured to obtain percentage data. Statistical analysis between groups was performed by ANOVA and Tukey tests.RESULT: In the apical third, G2 and G3 (PUI) groups showed higher percentage of cleaning than G1 (CMI) (p<0.05).CONCLUSION: Passive ultrasonic irrigation using intermittent flushing promoted a higher cleaning of simulated lateral canals than conventional manual irrigation in the apical third. There were no differences between groups in the main root canal and the middle third.