Comparison of organic tissue dissolution capacities of sodium hypochlorite and chlorine dioxide

J Endod. 2010 Feb;36(2):272-4. doi: 10.1016/j.joen.2009.10.027.


The organic tissue dissolution properties of irrigating solutions are important for the success of endodontic treatment. Chlorine dioxide (ClO2) has been recently proposed as an irrigation solution in endodontics. The organic tissue dissolution property of sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl) is well-known and extensively investigated, but apparently no data have been published on tissue-dissolving properties of ClO2. The aim of this in vitro study was to compare organic tissue dissolution capacity of NaOCl and ClO2. In this study, 5.25% NaOCl, 13.8% ClO2, and, as a control, isotonic saline solutions (0.9% NaCl) were used. Thirty bovine pulp specimens were previously weighed and immersed for 20 minutes in each test solution (changing the solution every 2 minutes). The pulp specimens were then blotted dry and weighed again. The percentage of weight loss was calculated and statistically analyzed by using one-way analysis of variance and post hoc Tukey honestly significant difference tests. Saline solution did not dissolve the organic tissue. Both 5.25% NaOCl and 13.8% ClO2 dissolved the tissue pieces more effectively than saline control (P < .05). No statistically significant difference was found between the tissue-dissolving properties of 5.25% NaOCl and those of 13.8% ClO2 (P > .05). Within the limitations of this in vitro study, it was concluded that ClO2 and NaOCl are equally efficient for dissolving organic tissue.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cattle
  • Chlorine Compounds / pharmacology*
  • Debridement / methods
  • Dental Disinfectants / pharmacology
  • Dental Pulp / drug effects*
  • Oxides / pharmacology*
  • Root Canal Irrigants / pharmacology*
  • Root Canal Preparation / methods*
  • Smear Layer
  • Sodium Hypochlorite / pharmacology*
  • Solubility


  • Chlorine Compounds
  • Dental Disinfectants
  • Oxides
  • Root Canal Irrigants
  • chlorine dioxide
  • Sodium Hypochlorite