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Int Endod J. 2005 Dec;38(12):855-9.

Ex vivo comparison of two electronic apex locators with different scales and frequencies.

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Department of Operative and Preventive Dentistry and Periodontology, Saarland University, Homburg/Saar, Germany.



To compare ex vivo the accuracy of two impedance quotient apex locators with different scales and frequencies of the measuring circuit.


In each root of 193 extracted human teeth, electronic working length determination (ELD) was carried out with a newly constructed measuring unit. In all cases, ELD was performed using the apex locators Justy II (Hager & Werken, Duisburg, Germany) and Raypex (VDW, Munich, Germany) on the scale points (sp) 0/0.5/1 of each device. A Miller Needle reaching working length was fixed with composite. The corresponding sp and the differences to the other sp were recorded. After histological preparation of the apical region, the teeth were examined under a light microscope. The distances of the Miller Needle tips to the target intervals 'minor foramen-major foramen' and 'apical canal constriction' (apical constriction) were determined for each sp for both devices. The data were statistically analysed by a chi-square test.


Precise determination of the target interval 'minor foramen-major foramen' was successful with Raypex 4 in 94.8% (sp 1), 90.7% (sp 0.5) and 72.5% (sp 0) of cases and with Justy II in 59.6% (sp 1), 92.2% (sp 0.5) and 68% (sp 0) of cases. No measurement carried out by Raypex 4 and by Justy II on sp 1 was beyond the major apical foramen. However, on sp 0.5, there were eight measurements for Raypex 4 and four measurements for Justy II beyond the major apical foramen. Overinstrumentation was also recorded for sp 0 in 49 specimens (Raypex 4) and 59 specimens (JustyII). The major apical constriction was met exactly by Raypex 4 in 50.7% (sp 1), 14% (sp 0.5) and 5.2% (sp 0) of cases and by Justy II in 32.1% (sp 1), 23.8% (sp 0.5) and 4.1% (sp 0) of cases. The differences between the determination made with the sp suggested by the manufacturers for Raypex 4 (sp 1) and Justy II (sp 0.5) were not significant (P > 0.05) for the target interval 'minor foramen-major foramen' and significant (P <or= 0.05) for the apical constriction. The differences between the sp of each device were significant (P <or= 0.05) for both target intervals.


It is possible to determine the region between the minor and major apical foramen with electronic apex locators ex vivo. The best results were obtained using the sp advised by the manufacturers. Raypex 4 gave the best results on sp one without any measurement beyond the apical foramen. Use of ELD does not result in precise determination of the apical constriction.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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