Monday, November 29, 2010

Successful Perforation Repair using MTA

This patient presented for treatment of #30 in March 2009. Prior RCT had been done and a large furcal lesion as well as periapical lesion were noted. Retreatment was recommended. Upon access, we found 2 additional canals as well as a furcal perforation. The tooth was obturated and perforation was repaired using MTA.

Post-Op films shows the MTA repair in the furcal area. Note the large lesion around the mesial root.

At 6 months, furcal and periapical lesion are improving and the tooth is functional.

At 18 months, the lesion continues to improve, tooth is completely asymptomatic and functional. Proper endodontic treatment and repair with MTA has retained a tooth that many would have considered "hopeless" or non-restorable based on the amount of furcal bone loss.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Superstition Springs Endodontics goes 3D

Superstition Springs Endodontics is excited to introduce cone beam technology (CBCT) into their practice of endodontics. The decision to incorporate this technology has come after a extended review of the technology, research and clinical applications of CBCT in endodontics.

Dr. Edward Carlson was among the first endodontists in Arizona to incorporate the operating microscope into his practice of endodontics almost twenty years ago. Just as the operating microscope has become an indispensable tool in the practice of endodontics, we expect CBCT to become integral part of endodontic diagnosis, treatment & evaluation.

As Superstition Springs Endodontics, we are specialists in saving teeth. The CBCT is another diagnostic tool to allow us to make important decisions about saving teeth. Doctors and patients who are committed to saving natural teeth, will be able to benefit from this new technology.

The clinical applications of CBCT in endodontics include:
1. Aid in endodontic diagnosis
2. Canal morphology
3. Evaluation of root fracture
4. Evaluation of internal root resorption
5. Evaluation of invasive cervical resorption
6. Presurgical assessment
7. Evaluation of non-endodontic pathology
8. Assist with implant planning for non-restorable teeth

We look forward to sharing cases using this new technology.

The first case to share is the case of a fractured tooth. This patient had a fall and hit her face 5 months ago. #8 was damaged and had to be removed and replaced with an immediate implant. #9 continued to give her symptoms and mobility.

Now it is obvious with a regular radiograph that there is a problem with this root. The tooth exhibited class II mobility.

The coronal view (left) shows the similar view to the standard radiograph, however, the sagittal view (right) shows how the fracture has sheared off toward the palate, well below the level of palatal bone. The ability to see this fracture from the sagittal view allows us to make a determination of the restorability of this tooth.

Previously, we would have had to remove the fractured portion of the tooth and visualize the depth of the fracture. The CBCT allows us to visualize this without the need to disassemble the tooth. This tooth has been recommended for extraction and the CBCT scan can also be used to help in the treatment planning of the new implant.

Stay tuned for more applications of CBCT in our endodontic practice.

We have selected a CBCT manufactured by J. Morita. J. Morita has been a leader in development of cone beam technology. The Veraviewepocs 3De is a focus field cone beam with incredible resolution, ideal for the practice of endodontics.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

An inexpensive solution for transillumination

At the most recent Inner Space Seminar, we discussed all different kinds of cracks in teeth. We reviewed how to detect them, classify them, treat them, & prevent them. An effective way to identify cracks in the crown of a tooth is by using transillumination.

I mentioned an inexpensive light that can be used for transillumination. Thanks to Dr. Nathan Saydyk for his research, this light has been discontinued and replaced with the new Browning 2120 Microblast Pen Light with Bore Light Adapter. This is a flashlight used for firearm inspection and cleaning that can be used for transillumination.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Managing a Cracked Tooth

Dealing with cracked teeth can be very challenging. In the first place, there is a lot of confusion about what we are calling a cracked tooth. Craze lines, fractured cusps, split teeth and vertical root fractures are all often called "cracked" teeth. However, treatment and prognosis are different for all of these different situations.

Cracks in teeth are findings, not a diagnosis. Proper pulpal and periapical diagnosis as well as the location and extent of a crack are needed to determine a proper treatment plan. The problem with cracks in the tooth are the possibility for future bacterial penetration, which leads to inflammation and disease.

With these considerations, many teeth with cracks can be saved. Keys to saving teeth with cracks are:
1. Early detection and treatment
2. Proper endodontic diagnosis
3. Proper determination of the location and extent of a crack

The following case of a cracked tooth was recently treated at Superstition Springs Endodontics.

This patient presented with mesial decay on #14 causing discomfort. The tooth was normal to percussion, probing and no response to thermal test. DX: Necrotic pulp w/ normal periapex. A crack was noted on the distal marginal ridge. RCT recommended.

Removal of decay and access revealed the crack extending down the distal wall.

Closer examination finds that the crack ends near the level of the CEJ. Pt is informed of the crack and the prognosis is good, since the new crown will be able to cover the crack. The crack should be removed at the time of the build-up.

A main key to saving teeth with cracks is to identify the location and extent of a crack.

An upcoming Inner Space Seminar, entitled "Breakdance" will help clinicians know how to identify and classify cracks in teeth, as well as treatment plan restorative options for teeth with cracks.