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Effect of Heated Sodium Hypochlorite Irrigant on Structural Changes and Microhardness of Radicular Dentin: An In Vitro Study.

AIM: This study is aimed to evaluate the combined effect of sodium hypochlorite at varied concentrations and temperatures on radicular dentin microhardness along with its surface structural changes using an FTIR spectrometer.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Mandibular premolars were cleaned and shaped up to F3 Protaper gold rotary files, after which they were subjected to five experimental conditions - group I - neutral saline as negative control, group II - 3% NaOCl solution, group III - 5% NaOCl solution, group IV - 3% intracanal-heated NaOCl solution, and group V - 5% intracanal-heated NaOCl solution. Following this, the microhardness of radicular dentin at 100 µm and 300 µm from the canal lumen and Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopic analysis were performed.

RESULTS: The results showed that intracanal-heated sodium hypochlorite group reduced root dentin microhardness at 300 µm than its nonheated counterpart. No difference in microhardness values was observed between 3% intracanal-heated and room-temperature sodium hypochlorite groups at 100 µm. Reduction in amide/phosphate ratio was noted in all the groups treated with sodium hypochlorite irrespective of temperature and concentration.

CONCLUSION: Thus, considering that the level of alteration in physical and structural changes of root dentin with or without heating is insignificant, intracanal-heated low-concentration sodium hypochlorite solutions could be used as an alternative to high-concentration sodium hypochlorite.

CLINICAL SIGNIFICANCE: Intracanal-heated low-concentration sodium hypochlorite enables the clinicians to achieve maximum disinfection while keeping the structural and physical properties of the dentin similar to room-temperature sodium hypochlorite.

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