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Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects (DARE): Quality-assessed Reviews [Internet]. York (UK): Centre for Reviews and Dissemination (UK); 1995-.

Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects (DARE): Quality-assessed Reviews [Internet].

Emergency management of acute apical periodontitis in the permanent dentition: a systematic review of the literature

Review published: 2003.

Bibliographic details: Sutherland S, Matthews D C.  Emergency management of acute apical periodontitis in the permanent dentition: a systematic review of the literature. Journal of the Canadian Dental Association 2003; 69(3): 160-160l. [PubMed: 12622880]

Quality assessment

This review investigated the use of drug therapy and surgical methods for the relief of pain associated with toothache. The authors concluded that there is good evidence to support the use of non-steroidal inflammatory drugs in combination with pulpectomy. This conclusion was derived from a subgroup analysis and should, therefore, be treated with some caution. Full critical summary

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To perform a systematic literature review and meta-analysis on the effectiveness of interventions used in the emergency management of acute apical periodontitis in the permanent dentition.

METHODS: Electronic databases were searched from their inception to 2001. These searches, combined with manual searching, yielded 1,097 citations, of which 92 were relevant. Independent application of inclusion criteria by 2 teams of reviewers yielded 15 eligible randomized controlled trials. Data on population, interventions, outcomes (pain relief or change in intensity of pain as reported by patients or clinicians) and methodological quality were determined by independent duplicate review. Disagreements were resolved by consensus.

RESULTS: Meta-analysis showed that pre-emptive analgesics (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs [NSAIDs]) in conjunction with pulpectomy provided a significant benefit (weighted mean difference -11.70, 95% confidence interval -22.84 to -0.56). Three interventions did not show significant benefit: systemic antibiotics, intracanal treatment with a steroid-antibiotic combination, and trephination through attached gingiva.

CONCLUSIONS: In the management of pain associated with acute apical periodontitis, there is strong evidence to support the use of systemic NSAIDs in conjunction with nonsurgical endodontics. The use of antibiotics is not recommended.

CRD has determined that this article meets the DARE scientific quality criteria for a systematic review.

Copyright © 2012 University of York.

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