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J Endod. 1996 Apr;22(4):173-6.

Comparison of radiographic and electronic working lengths.

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Department of Endodontics, University of Maryland at Baltimore 20101-1586, USA.


The purpose of this study was to compare the ability of radiographic and electronic methods to determine reliably the location of the apical constriction. The working length of root canals in human cadaver teeth was determined by positioning an endodontic file at the apical termination point as indicated by an apex locator. These same teeth were radiographed at various angles with the file in place. The radiographs were evaluated by five examiners to determine a radiographic termination point for each canal. Teeth were extracted and examined histologically to determine the ideal termination point. The deviations of the two experimental termination points from the ideal termination point were compared. The mean of the absolute value of the deviations from the apical constriction for the apex locator was significantly less (p < 0.05) than that for the radiographic method. Thus, the method using the apex locator was slightly more reliable.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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