Objectives: The primary aim was: "Does power-driven pocket/root instrumentation offer a clinical advantage over hand instrumentation"? Secondary aim was to update knowledge base of power-driven instrumentation post Tunkel et al. (2002).
Material and methods: A literature search of power-driven instruments (in vitro, in vivo and controlled clinical trials) was performed from April 2001 using similar criteria to Tunkel et al. (2002). Primary outcome was whether power-driven instruments offered an advantage over hand instrumentation; secondary outcomes were effect on root surface, effectiveness of new instrument designs, and role of biophysical effects such as cavitation.
Results: From a total of 41 studies, 14 studies involved comparison of power-driven devices with hand instrumentation for non-surgical therapy. These were subdivided into new designs of power instrumentation, full-mouth debridement and irrigation and patient acceptance. Use of power-driven instrumentation provides similar clinical outcomes compared with hand instrumentation. Difficulty of pooling studies continues to hinder the drawing of definitive conclusions.
Conclusion: Newer designs of powered instruments have not shown any benefit when compared with other ultrasonic devices in non-surgical periodontal therapy. New in vitro research shows there is variation in the performance of different tip designs and generators, but its clinical relevance remains unknown.