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Int Endod J. 2019 Aug;52(8):1244-1249. doi: 10.1111/iej.13111. Epub 2019 Mar 28.

Canal shaping with a reciprocating system is easy to learn.

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Department of Stomatology, Clínica Odontológica, Universitat de València, Valencia, Spain.
Laboratory for Investigative Dermatology, Rockefeller University, New York, NY, USA.
Special Care in Dentistry and Gerodontology, Faculty of Medicine, School of Dentistry, University of Murcia, Murcia, Spain.



To assess progressive learning of root canal shaping in order to define the number of simulated canals in resin blocks needed to reach a level of learning beyond which no further improvement in performance is observed.


A total of 216 simulated canals in resin blocks were instrumented by 18 operators without experience in Endodontics and by 18 Endodontists. The R25 file of the Reciproc system (VDW, Munich, Germany) was used to prepare the canals. The blocks were photographed before and after instrumentation. An analysis was made of the variations in the dimensions of the canals at 6 locations and of the instrumentation time. A Student's t-test was used to analyse the data (P < 0.05).


The group without experience were associated with significant differences in instrumentation time between the first canal and the subsequent canals (P < 0.05) but differences in canal dimensions were not significant (P > 0.05). In the group with experience, the instrumentation time did not differ significantly after the fifth canal, and no significant variations in canal dimensions were observed (P > 0.05).


When conducting studies on root canal shaping or educating students with new instruments, a simulated canal sample size of 6 was appropriate to achieve competence.


dental education; endodontics; reciprocating motion; root canal shaping; simulated root canals; students


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