Antimicrobial efficacy of a high-power diode laser, photo-activated disinfection, conventional and sonic activated irrigation during root canal treatment

International Endodontic Journal, 00, 000000, 2012.



To evaluate the antimicrobial effect of a diode laser irradiation, photo-activated disinfection (PAD), conventional and sonic activated irrigation with 2.5% sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl) on Enterococcus faecalis.


Root canals of 120 human extracted teeth with single straight canals were prepared with ProTaper files, sterilized, contaminated with an E. faecalis suspension and incubated for 7 days. They were then randomly distributed into six groups: G1, diode laser irradiation (2 W, 3 × 20 s); G2, PAD (100 mW, 60 s); G3, PAD with 3D Endoprobe (100 mW, 60 s); G4, 30-gauge syringe irrigation with NaOCl (60 s); G5, sonic agitation of NaOCl with the EndoActivator system (60 s); G6, 30-gauge syringe irrigation with NaCl (60 s). The pattern of colonization was visualized by scanning electron microscopy. The root canals were sampled by flushing with saline solution at baseline and after the treatments. The number of bacteria in each canal was determined by plate count. The presence and the absence of E. faecalis in root canals were also demonstrated by polymerase chain reaction (PCR).


There was a significant reduction in the bacterial population after all treatments (P < 0.001). The PAD, using both laser systems, and the sonic activated NaOCl irrigation were significantly more effective than diode irradiation and single NaOCl irrigation in reducing CFUs (P < 0.05). High-power diode laser and single NaOCl irrigation had an equal antibacterial effect (P > 0.05).


The PAD and EndoActivator system were more successful in reducing the root canal infection than the diode laser and NaOCl syringe irrigation alone.


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