An Evaluation of Endodontically Treated Vertical Root Fractured Teeth: Impact of Operative Procedures

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Vertical root fractures of endodontically treated teeth are a frustrating complication that leads to extraction. The aim of the current survey was to evaluate the role of operative procedures in the etiology of this complication. A total of 154 endodontically treated vertical root fractured teeth were cleaned and washed after extraction and maintained in individual vials. Periapical radiographs before extraction, clinical findings and previous operative procedures were recorded. A post was observed in 95 teeth (61.7%), with 66 of these ending at the coronal third of the root. Most were screw posts of the Dentatus type (n = 64) and tapered cast posts (n = 14). A full crown was observed in 118 teeth, and 65 of these (55%) were extracted between 1 to 5 yr after final restoration. In 24 crowned teeth extraction was conducted within 1 yr after restoration and in 28 teeth after >5 years. It was concluded that post placement and root canal treatment are the major etiological factors for root fractures. Because signs and symptoms can appear years after the operative procedures in the root have been completed, coronal restorations would not interfere with the correct clinical diagnosis of vertical root fractures. Frequent recalls are recommended to diagnose vertical root fractures early, especially in susceptible teeth, such as premolars and mesial roots of mandibular molars.

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