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Quintessence Publishing: Journals: QI
Quintessence International

Edited by Eli Eliav

ISSN 0033-6572 (print) • ISSN 1936-7163 (online)

September 2012
Volume 43 , Issue 8

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In vitro microbiologic evaluation of PTFE and cotton as spacer materials

Avina Paranjpe, BDS, MS, MSD, PhD/Sumita Jain, PhD/Karim Z. Alibhai, DDS, FACD/Chandur P. Wadhwani, DDS, MSD/Richard P. Darveau, PhD/James D. Johnson, DDS, MS

Pages: 703-707
PMID: 23034423

Objective: To microbiologically evaluate the efficacy of cotton and polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) tape used as spacer materials. Method and Materials: Twenty-six extracted human molars were restored using either cotton or PTFE tape as spacers under a standardized provisional restorative material (Cavit). The teeth were incubated for 7 days in a culture of Streptococcus gordonii or in liquid media alone. The spacers were removed and tested for bacterial contamination. The access cavities were also evaluated for bacterial contamination. Results: Nine of 10 teeth with cotton spacers and one of 10 teeth with PTFE spacers were positive for S gordonii growth. The nine teeth in the cotton group also showed contamination of the access cavities. Conclusion: Even under optimal conditions, cotton spacers may cause leakage into the access cavities. Cotton fibers may serve as a route for bacterial contamination of the access cavities and root canal space. In contrast, PTFE tape did not provide an avenue for bacterial contamination. (Quintessence Int 2012;43:703707)

Key words: cotton, endodontics, PTFE, spacer

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