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Lett Appl Microbiol. 2013 Feb;56(2):95-8. doi: 10.1111/lam.12017. Epub 2012 Dec 27.

Antimicrobial efficacy of cryotreatment against Enterococcus faecalis in root canals.

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Department of Public Health and Microbiology, University of Turin, Turin, Italy.


The purpose of this investigation was to evaluate intracanal bacterial reduction by cryotreatment using a dental instrument equipped with a duct and connected to a cryogenic fluid source. A total of 86 roots were infected with Enterococcus faecalis and incubated. After incubation, the contaminated roots were divided into three study groups: 35 roots irrigated with 2 ml of a 5% sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl) solution, 35 roots irrigated with 2 ml of a 5% NaOCl solution and further treated with cryo and 10 roots irrigated with 2 ml of saline solution, plus positive and negative controls. Subsequent to each irrigation treatment, the residual bacterial colonies were counted. The use of cryo-instrumentation in association with NaOCl irrigation significantly reduced the number of Ent. faecalis (P < 0·01) in the root canal compared with controls. The interesting potential of cryotreatment should be further investigated through clinical studies aimed to establish a correct irrigation protocol. Within the limits of the study, the cryotreatment seems to have a greater effect on the reduction in bacteria compared to a standard NaOCl irrigation.

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