Clinical research| Volume 33, ISSUE 12, P1405-1407, December 2007

A Six Year Evaluation of Cracked Teeth Diagnosed with Reversible Pulpitis: Treatment and Prognosis

Published:October 16, 2007DOI:


      The purpose of this investigation was to report on the clinical outcomes of cracked teeth diagnosed with reversible pulpitis (RP). Eight thousand one hundred seventy-five patients referred for evaluation and treatment during a 6-year period had medical and dental histories, radiographs, pulpal and periapical diagnosis, periodontal probings, direct identification of crack(s) with transillumination, and biting responses on various cusps recorded. All data were stored daily in a database. All cases were treatment planned according to the pulpal and periapical diagnosis. Cases with RP were treatment planned for crowns only, regardless of periapical diagnosis. All patients were recalled at 1 year unless root canal treatment was needed before the anniversary. Results indicated that cracks were identified in 9.7% (796 of 8175) of all teeth evaluated during this time period. Of 127 patients specifically diagnosed with RP, 27 converted to irreversible pulpitis (N = 21) in 58 days or to necrotic pulp (N = 6) in 149 days. To date, none of the original remaining 100 cases of RP have required root canal treatment. The outcomes of this study suggest that if a marginal ridge crack is identified early enough in teeth with a diagnosis of RP and a crown is placed, root canal treatment will be necessary in about 20% of these cases within a 6-month period.

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