Conventional cleaning and shaping of root canal spaces involves the use of hand and rotary instruments with irrigation. The procedure results in the formation of a smear layer consisting of dentin shavings, organic tissue remnants and microorganisms. The laser has been suggested as an aid in root canal preparation. In this study, pulsed and continuous wave 1.06 μm wavelength Nd:YAG lasers were used to compare their abilities to clean and shape root canal spaces to conventional methods. After preparation, the test teeth were sectioned longitudinally and examined by scanning electron microscopy. The results demonstrated that the laser was capable of removing the smear layer in its entirety and could occasionally alter dentin walls.
Goodis, H. E.; White, J. M.; Marshall, S. J.; and Marshall, G. W. Jr.
"Scanning Electron Microscopic Examination of Intracanal Wall Dentin: Hand Versus Laser Treatment,"
Scanning Microscopy: Vol. 7
, Article 22.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/microscopy/vol7/iss3/22