The purpose of this preliminary study was to evaluate the diagnostic accuracy of the combined use of 2 cone-beam computed tomographic (CBCT) volumes obtained with the tooth of interest positioned at different orientations in the detection of vertical root fracture (VRF).
Thirty single-rooted teeth were divided into 2 main groups (n = 15): control and with VRF. The teeth were individually placed in a phantom composed of a human skull and mandible, which was CBCT scanned in 2 spatial orientations: conventional (with the Frankfurt plane parallel to the floor) and angled acquisition (tilted 90° backward). Also, each tooth was scanned with gutta-percha, a metal post, and without any intracanal material. Three oral radiologists individually evaluated the images resulting from conventional acquisition and verified the presence or absence of VRF (conventional CBCT assessment), setting a score on a 5-point scale. Subsequently, the observers evaluated both images resulting from the conventional and angled acquisitions (combined CBCT assessment). The diagnostic values of the conventional and combined assessments were compared using 2-way analysis of variance with the post hoc Tukey test. The significance level was set at 5% (α = 0.05).
The combined CBCT assessment showed higher accuracy and sensitivity in the VRF diagnosis of teeth filled with gutta-percha (P < .05). In teeth with a metal post, all diagnostic values were higher in the combined CBCT assessment (P < .05).
This preliminary study suggests that the CBCT-based diagnosis of VRF in teeth with intracanal material was improved when the assessment combines images obtained at 2 orientations.
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Published online: April 13, 2021
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