Aim and objective: The aim of the study was to assess the quality of obturation performed by undergraduate dental students in the endodontic clinics at the Department of Conservative Dental Sciences, College of Dentistry, Prince Sattam Bin Abdulaziz University,
Materials and methods: In this retrospective study, records of 400 patients were randomly selected for whom root canal treatment was performed by 4th and 5th year undergraduate dental students between academic year 2016 to 2018, and in 2019, an intraoral periapical (IOPA) radiographs were evaluated by an experienced endodontist. These radiographs were taken in straight (head on) technique and shift/SLOB (Same Lingual and Opposite Buccal) technique (when needed). Statistical analysis of the data was carried out using SPSS software and Chi-square test. The Statistical significance level was set at P = 0.05.
Results: This study showed that a total 149 patients were treated by 4th BDS students, in which around 63.5% had done adequate obturation and 36.5% suffered from some or the other problems related to obturation. In comparison, 5th year BDS students had performed endodontic treatment in 251 patients, 71% of them were adequately obturated and 29% had inadequate obturation. There was a statistically significant difference regarding the length of the root canal obturation (P=0.001). The frequency of adequate obturation was significantly higher in anterior teeth compared to premolar and molar teeth.
Conclusion: Within the limitation of this study, it was shown that more training was required for both 4th and 5th year undergraduate dental students, as most of them had absence of homogenization in their obturation and as well as underfilling of the root canal system. Adequate training is necessary for the students at the preclinical and clinical levels under close supervision to improve the quality of root canal obturation.
Clinical significance: This study will help in evaluating dental students who are performing the endodontic treatment and any incoherence that exists can be dealt with better teaching approaches. In addition, this study will enable us to know what improvements are required, so that better equipment, as well as novel techniques in endodontics, can be used for the overall development of students in pursuit of excellence.
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