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New Research Shows Dental Implants Require Significantly More Follow-Up Treatment Than Root Canals
Date:11/13/2008

Dental Professionals and Patients Should Strive to Preserve Natural Teeth

before Considering Implants

CHICAGO, Nov. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- A new study addresses the growing controversy among dental health professionals regarding the best course of treatment when evaluating between a root canal or dental implant procedure. Researchers evaluated the success and failure rates of teeth treated with a root canal (endodontically treated teeth) or extracted and replaced with a dental implant. While the findings concluded that the success rate of each treatment was similar, the data showed that significantly more dental implants required additional treatment or surgical intervention after the procedure compared to endodontically treated teeth (12.4 percent versus 1.4 percent, respectively).

"Many dental professionals today are faced with the dilemma of whether root canal treatment or dental implants are the best option for their patients," said lead investigator James Porter Hannahan, D.M.D., of the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL. "While the success of both procedures is similar, saving the natural tooth through a root canal rarely requires follow-up treatment and generally lasts a lifetime; implants, on the other hand, have more post-operative complications and higher long-term failure rates."

Research has shown that poor oral health and tooth loss may lead to serious medical conditions, such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes and even certain types of cancer. Given this connection, taking the right steps to prevent tooth loss can be important for maintaining better overall health.

"Considering these results in light of the growing body of evidence on the impact of oral health on overall health, it is imperative for dental professionals to partner with endodontists who have advanced training in examining whether a natural tooth can be saved through root canal treatment," said Dr. Louis Rossman, an e
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SOURCE American Association of Endodontists
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