Clinical Oral Investigations

, Volume 22, Issue 7, pp 2495–2503 | Cite as

Prevalence of technical errors and periapical lesions in a sample of endodontically treated teeth: a CBCT analysis

  • Eduarda Helena Leandro NascimentoEmail author
  • Hugo Gaêta-Araujo
  • Maria Fernanda Silva Andrade
  • Deborah Queiroz Freitas
Original Article



The aims of this study are to identify the most frequent technical errors in endodontically treated teeth and to determine which root canals were most often associated with those errors, as well as to relate endodontic technical errors and the presence of coronal restorations with periapical status by means of cone-beam computed tomography images.


Six hundred eighteen endodontically treated teeth (1146 root canals) were evaluated for the quality of their endodontic treatment and for the presence of coronal restorations and periapical lesions. Each root canal was classified according to dental groups, and the endodontic technical errors were recorded. Chi-square’s test and descriptive analyses were performed.


Six hundred eighty root canals (59.3%) had periapical lesions. Maxillary molars and anterior teeth showed higher prevalence of periapical lesions (p < 0.05). Endodontic treatment quality and coronal restoration were associated with periapical status (p < 0.05). Underfilling was the most frequent technical error in all root canals, except for the second mesiobuccal root canal of maxillary molars and the distobuccal root canal of mandibular molars, which were non-filled in 78.4 and 30% of the cases, respectively.


There is a high prevalence of apical radiolucencies, which increased in the presence of poor coronal restorations, endodontic technical errors, and when both conditions were concomitant. Underfilling was the most frequent technical error, followed by non-homogeneous and non-filled canals.

Clinical relevance

Evaluation of endodontic treatment quality that considers every single root canal aims on warning dental practitioners of the prevalence of technical errors that could be avoided with careful treatment planning and execution.


Endodontics Cone-beam computed tomography Periapical diseases Root canal obturation 



This work was supported by the Division of Oral Radiology, Department of Oral Diagnosis, Piracicaba Dental School, University of Campinas, Campinas, SP, Brazil.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in this study were conducted in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional Research Ethics Committee of the Piracicaba Dental School, UNICAMP (#073/2015), and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eduarda Helena Leandro Nascimento
    • 1
    Email author
  • Hugo Gaêta-Araujo
    • 1
  • Maria Fernanda Silva Andrade
    • 1
  • Deborah Queiroz Freitas
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Oral Diagnosis, Division of Oral Radiology, Piracicaba Dental SchoolUniversity of Campinas (UNICAMP)PiracicabaBrazil

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