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01.12.2015 | Research article | Ausgabe 1/2015 Open Access

BMC Oral Health 1/2015

Treatment outcomes of single-visit versus multiple-visit non-surgical endodontic therapy: a randomised clinical trial

BMC Oral Health > Ausgabe 1/2015
Amy Wai-Yee Wong, Cissy Sung-Chi Tsang, Shinan Zhang, Kar-Yan Li, Chengfei Zhang, Chun-Hung Chu
Wichtige Hinweise

Competing interests

The authors declare they have no competing interests.

Authors’ contributions

AWY Wong and CSC Tsang performed the endodontic treatment. S Zhang performed the evaluation. SKY Li performed the statistical analysis. CF Zhang and CH Chu planned the study and contributed equally to the supervision of the study. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

Authors’ information

AWY Wong is a general dentist and PhD student, CSC Tsang is a general dentist, S Zhang is a PhD graduate, SKY Li is a statistician, CH Chu and C Zhang are clinical associate professors in the Faculty of Dentistry, The University of Hong Kong.



Clincians have been providing single-visit and multiple-visit endodontic treatments for their patients. This study aims to compare the success rate, prevalence of postoperative pain and chairside time of single-visit and multiple-visit endodontic treatments.


Patients who required primary endodontic treatment in a university dental clinic were randomly allocated to two general dentists for single-visit or multiple-visit treatments using the same materials and procedures. Ni-Ti rotary files were used to prepare the root canals, which were subsequently obturated with a core-carrier technique. The chairside time was recorded. The treated teeth were followed up every 6 months on clinically signs and symptoms including pain, tenderness to percussion, sinus tract, mobility and abscess. Periapical radiographs were taken to assess periapical pathology. Successful treatments were neither clinical signs/symptoms noted nor radiographic periapical pathology found postoperatively.


A total of 220 teeth from patients aged 46.4 ± 14.1 were followed up for at least 18 months. The mean (±SD) follow-up period was 29.4 ± 9.3 months. The success rates of single-visit and multiple-visit treatments were 88.9 and 87.4 %, respectively (p = 0.729, effect size odds ratio = 1.156). Maxillary teeth had odds ratios of 3.16 (95 % CI: 1.33 to 7.46; p = 0.009) and absence of preoperative apical periodontitis had odds ratios of 4.35 (95 % CI: 1.43 to 13.24; p = 0.010) were identified from logistic regression as having a higher success rate. The average chairside times of single-visit and multiple-visit treatments were 62.0 and 92.9 min, respectively (mean difference = −30.9, 95 % CI: −39.4 to −22.4, p < 0.001, effect size odds ratio = −0.996). Single-visit and multiple-visit treatment had no significant difference in the prevalence of postoperative pain within 7 days (21 and 12 %, p = 0.055, effect size odds ratio = 2.061) and after at least 18 months (0.9 and 1.0 %, p > 0.999, effect size odds ratio = 0.879).


The success rate and prevalence of postoperative pain of single-visit or multiple-visit treatment had no significant difference. The chairside time for single-visit treatment was shorter than multiple-visit treatment.

Trial registration

Clinical Trials (WHO) ChiCTR-IOR-15006117 registered on 20 March 2015.
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