The effect of sodium hypochlorite concentration and irrigation needle extension on biofilm removal from a simulated root canal model

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To investigate the effect of sodium hypochlorite concentration and needle extension on removal of Enterococcus faecalis biofilm, sixty root canal models were 3D printed. Biofilms were grown on the apical 3 mm of the canal for 10 days. Irrigation for 60s with 9 mL of either 5.25% or 2.5% NaOCl or water was performed using a needle inserted either 3 or 2 mm from the canal terminus and imaged using fluorescence microscopy and residual biofilm percentages were calculated using imaging software. The data were analysed using analysis of covariance and two-sample t-tests. A significance level of 0.05 was used throughout. Residual biofilm was less using 5.25% than with 2.5% NaOCl. Statistically significant biofilm removal was evident with the needle placed closer to the canal terminus. A greater reduction of available chlorine and pH was noted as the concentration increased. One-minute irrigation was not sufficient for complete biofilm removal.

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