Assessment of the Effectiveness of Supplementary Methods for Residual Filling Material Removal Using Micro-computed Tomography: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of In Vitro Studies

Eur Endod J. 2022 Oct;7(3):178-186. doi: 10.14744/eej.2022.22932.


A systematic review and meta-analysis were conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of auxiliary methods in removing residual filling material (RFM). This systematic review has been registered with the International Prospective Register of Systematic Reviews (registration number CRD42020197482). A comprehensive literature search was conducted to identify relevant articles in electronic databases (PubMed, Embase, Cochrane) from January 2005 to March 2021. In vitro studies investigating or comparing at least one type of supplementary method or technique were included. A total of 26 studies were selected from the 239 records obtained after screening the databases. Ten of the included studies were suitable for meta-analysis. Strong evidence showed that ultrasonically activated irrigation (UAI) [SMD (95% CI): -0.52 (-0.88 to -0.16, P=0.266)] and XP-Endo Finisher R (XPR) [SMD (95% CI): -0.55 (-0.89 to -0.20, P=0.136)) contributed significantly to increase the removal procedure, and XPR has no significant superiority over UAI [SMD (95% CI): 0.36 (-0.12 to 0.84, P=0.994)]. Strong evidence was found to support the increased cleaning efficiency of the supplementary use of the Gentle Wave system, laser irradiation, XP Endo Finisher, and self-adjusting file. In contrast, conflicting evidence was found to support the use of sonic to improve the removal of RFM, and limited evidence was found to support the efficiency of Tornado Brush. Under in vitro conditions, UAI and XPR increase the removal of RFM from the root canal system during retreatment procedures.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Dental Pulp Cavity
  • Root Canal Filling Materials*
  • Root Canal Obturation*
  • Root Canal Preparation
  • X-Ray Microtomography


  • Root Canal Filling Materials