Changes in periapical status of root canal-treated teeth after head and neck IMRT: a retrospective study
Keywords:Periapical status, Apical periodontitis, Intensity modulated radiotherapy, Osteoradionecrosis
The objective of this retrospective study was to analyze the effect of the intensity modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) of the head and neck region on root canal-treated teeth and their periapical changes due to radiation. Patients undergoing IMRT of the head and neck region were evaluated. Different types of teeth (molars, premolars, incisors and canines) were compared. Panoramic and dental radiographs were used to assess the periapical region of root canal-treated teeth using the periapical index (PAI) before and after radiotherapy (RT) and put in relation to the radiation dose per tooth. Further parameters (patient-, therapy- and tooth-related factors) were included in this study. One hundred and twenty-four root canal-treated teeth (maxilla and mandible) of 51 patients were observed. A radiolucency in the periapical region was seen in 34.7% of the samples before IMRT and an increasing number of 46% after IMRT (p-value 0.092). Clinical or radiological signs of osteoradionecrosis could not be determined. The only statistically significant difference was detected in regions irradiated with less than 40 Gy (p-value 0.045). In regions irradiated with higher doses (>40 Gy), comparable pathologies increased in non-significant numbers. A statistically significant increase of periapical pathologies was detected in premolars of the maxilla. The observations reported here suggest that a high radiation dose during IMRT has no significant consequences on root canal-treated teeth. To compare the success of endodontic treatment before versus after IMRT, further research needs to be done.
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