Irrigation is essential to every root canal. Two tools from Vista Dental Products aim to improve its effectiveness while taking less of a toll on tired wrists. The AutoSyringe ejects irrigants in a steady stream, while the Endo Ultra uses ultrasonic technology to help that fluid reach impacted tissue.
“It’s all about convenience and ergonomics,” said Nick Pond, product manager at Vista. “An endodontist who is using a standard syringe is doing the same motion all day. They tend to get kind of sore in their hands. The AutoSyringe is a nice solution for that.”
Each AutoSyringe comes with a set of 20-mL Quick-Connect canisters that dentists can fill with any irrigant. Empty canisters snap right off, and replacements snap right on. When it’s time for irrigation, users select one of three speed settings and simply activate the device.
“You can go from a drip, drip, drip to a streaming setting,” Pond said. “Also, it’s safer than standard needle irrigation because it’s a controlled flow. You’re getting a consistent flow the entire time, whereas with your hand, you’re relying on yourself. There’s some variability.”
The AutoSyringe also accepts all standard irrigating tips. Also, Pond noted that the device saves endodontists the costs of new syringes. Endodontists use at least 4 syringes per procedure, he said, at a total cost of about $20 dollars a day. Using the AutoSyringe instead, he added, would pay for itself in about a month.
Sterilization is not an issue either. Each AutoSyringe comes with 24 canister liners, 100 plastic barrier sleeves, and 3 autoclavable sleeves. Also, it plugs right into its battery-charger base after each use for powered, cordless use.
Once the canal has been irrigated, users can switch to the EndoUltra. According to Vista, research has shown that irrigants are more effective when they are electromechanically activated. Acoustic streaming and cavitation can significantly enhance cleansing of difficult anatomy.
“Standard needle irrigation leaves 35% of the canal untouched by irrigating solution,” said Pond, adding that bacteria and debris can be left behind in manual irrigation. “Infection could occur. And then you have to retreat,” he said.
The EndoUltra, though, uses 40,000 Hz of acoustical streaming to disrupt biofilm, improve irrigant penetration and debris removal, and remove vapor lock. According to Vista, passive irrigation only reaches 27% of the canal’s isthmus. The Endo Ultra reaches 98.8%, forcing irrigants into the lateral canals for a full cleansing.
Dentists simply insert the tip of the device to 3 mm short of the apex for effective operation. Tips come in 15/02 and 25/04 sizes, with depth markers at 18, 19, and 20 mm. Each autoclavable tip can be used up to 20 times. Tips may be purchased separately as well.
According to Pond, the EndoUltra is 100% safe despite the rapid vibration. It is no different from introducing a file, he said, as its tips do not cut dentin. The ultrasonic operation isn’t audible either, reducing patient anxiety.
Like the AutoSyringe, the Endo Ultra was designed with the user in mind. Its contra angle provides access to all areas of the tooth. An LED light near the tip illuminates the treatment area. Charging via USB supports an hour and a half of continuous runtime. Plus, its autoclavable sleeves and barriers ensure sterile use.
“There are competitive products out there. But those are all sonic devices,” said Pond. “This is ultrasonic. So, that’s huge. Nearly all of the research out there supports ultrasonics.”