Introduction: The aims of this study were to evaluate dentin debris removal from the root canal during ultrasonic activation of sodium hypochlorite (2% and 10%), carbonated water, and distilled water and to determine the influence of 3 ultrasonic refreshment/activation cycles of the irrigant by using the intermittent flush technique.
Methods: Root canals with a standardized groove in 1 canal wall, which was filled with dentin debris, were irrigated ultrasonically. The irrigant was refreshed and ultrasonically activated 3 times for 20 seconds. The quantity of dentin debris after irrigation was determined after each refreshment/activation cycle.
Results and conclusions: Ultrasonic activation of the irrigant combined with the intermittent flush method produces a cumulative effect over 3 refreshment/activation cycles. Sodium hypochlorite as an irrigant is significantly more effective than carbonated water, which is significantly more effective than distilled water, in removing dentin debris from the root canal during ultrasonic activation.
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