Evaluation of cone beam computed tomography and periapical radiography in the diagnosis of root resorption

Aust Dent J. 2016 Dec;61(4):425-431. doi: 10.1111/adj.12407.


Background: This study aimed to evaluate the accuracy of cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) and periapical radiography in diagnosing root resorption and verify the influence of filling material in detecting these lesions.

Methods: Digital periapical radiographs and CBCT images of patients with root resorption and a history of dental trauma from a radiology clinic were reviewed retrospectively. The sample comprised 40 teeth with root resorption and 20 normal teeth as controls. Images were analysed by two radiologists and two endodontists. The sensitivity, specificity and accuracy were determined. The kappa coefficient assessed interobserver agreement and the t test determined significant differences between the imaging methods.

Results: The accuracy of CBCT in diagnosing external (P = 0.0144) and internal (P = 0.0038) inflammatory resorption was significantly higher than for periapical radiography. For replacement resorption, no statistical difference was noted (P > 0.05). In endodontically treated teeth, CBCT was statistically superior in diagnosing root resorption (P = 0.0138).

Conclusions: CBCT was superior to digital periapical radiography in diagnosing external and internal inflammatory root resorption after dental trauma and can be considered in the differential diagnosis of resorptive lesions in teeth with endodontic treatment.

Keywords: Dental trauma; cone beam computed tomography; root resorption.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cone-Beam Computed Tomography / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Observer Variation
  • Radiography, Bitewing / methods
  • Radiography, Dental, Digital / methods
  • Root Canal Filling Materials
  • Root Resorption / diagnostic imaging*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Root Canal Filling Materials