The aim of this literary review is to discuss the various techniques used both, historicallyand at present to obturate a prepared root canal. The purpose of obturation is to place a biocompatible, inert filling material in the space previously occupied by pulp tissue, (Wesselink,1990). The key to successful obturation is to obtain a complete seal, both apically and coronallyso as to prevent the possibility of microleakage, which adversely affects the success of root canaltherapy
. Microleakage, in the root canal is the movement of periradicular fluids,microorganisms and their toxins along the interface of the root filling material and the dentinalwall. It has been suggested that 60% of endodontic failure is due to incomplete obturation, (Ingleand Bakland, 1994). Therefore the development and modification of obturation techniques has been the focus of many studies over the years.In reviewing the appropriate literature, I will
Include a brief description of the materials used as obturating materials.
Include a description of the techniques used historically, at present and those being developed.
Include evaluations of these various techniques as seen in many studies.
Include a comparison of the various techniques.
Include details of new obturating techniques and materialsHistorically materials such as silver points, plastic points, amalgam, and titanium wereused as obturating materials
. Silver points were found to be biocompatible and provided goodapical seal. Both silver and titanium points can be placed using the ‘
. A point of adequate size is seated to the correct working length. It is removed and the apical 3-5mmis then half sectioned with a disc or bur. The point is then coated in sealer and inserted using firmapical pressure. The shank is rotated and withdrawn leaving the sectioned tip in position. The‘
, is a modification of this involving tips that screw into the shank. The tip,which is coated in sealer, is held in place by tug-back and then the handle rotated in an anti-clockwise direction to unscrew the tip. The latter technique was proven to be better due to thefact that points in the ‘Sectional Technique’ tend to break or tend to be placed in the wrong position. Modern materials have replaced obturation using silver points. This is partly due to thefact that silver can corrode causing toxicity and also don’t fit very well as they can’t becompressed to suit the canal shape.Amalgam was well tolerated as an obturating material, non-absorbable and capable of forming a good seal
. It was used to obturate canals and in a surgical procedure as a root-endfilling material. Amalgam is carried to the size 55, 60 or 80 canal using a Dimashkieh carrier,which is loaded by pressing the tip into freshly mixed amalgam
. The working length is markedon the shank of the carrier. It is inserted to the full working length and then withdrawn 1mm.Depressing the head of the handle ejects the amalgam. The carrier is withdrawn and the amalgamcondensed using the matching condenser. Several increments are required to fill the apical 3mm.The disadvantages of amalgam techniques include the need for large amounts of canal preparation and the fact that it is almost impossible to remove
. It is therefore rarely if at all used presently.Gutta-percha is the most commonly used filling material and has been dentally acceptedfor more than 100 years
. It originates from trees and is a trans isomer of poly-isoprene. It existsin many phases with the
phase being the unheated, solid, compactable phase. The
-phase iswhen GP reaches 42
and is soft, sticky and non-compactable. The
-phase has similar phasesto this and exists when GP reaches 52
. GP in its
-phase is favoured as an obturationmaterial as it is inert, dimensionally stable, tissue tolerant, compressible, radiopaque, can plasticise with heat and has known solvents
. Many techniques have been developed over theyears in order to obtain adequate obturation using GP.2