Home Print this page Email this page Users Online: 308
Home About us Editorial board Search Ahead of print Current issue Archives Submit article Instructions Subscribe Contacts Login 

 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 11  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 383-387

Mandibular second molars' C-shaped canal frequency in the Pakistani subpopulation: A retrospective cone-beam computed tomography clinical study


1 Department of Operative Dentistry, Riphah International University, Islamabad, Pakistan
2 Department of Conservative Dental Sciences and Endodontics, College of Dentistry, Qassim University, Buraydah, Saudi Arabia

Date of Submission22-Nov-2020
Date of Decision22-Dec-2020
Date of Acceptance08-Jan-2021
Date of Web Publication3-Sep-2021

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Muhammad Qasim Javed
Department of Conservative Dental Sciences and Endodontics, College of Dentistry, Qassim University, Buraydah
Saudi Arabia
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/sej.sej_288_20

Rights and Permissions
  Abstract 

Introduction: The adequate knowledge of the canal configuration can improve the quality and prognosis of endodontic treatment. The aim of the study was to determine the frequency of C-shaped root canal in the mandibular permanent second molars among a Pakistani subpopulation sample by utilizing cone-beam computed tomography images.
Materials and Methods: Cone-beam computed tomographic images of 360 patients with 720 mandibular second molars were analyzed for the presence of C-shaped canal configuration. The root canal system was classified according to Fan's classification at three distinct levels. Unilateral or bilateral presence of C-shaped root canals and the location of the longitudinal groove were assessed. Moreover, the correlation of frequency of C-shaped canal with the gender was measured using the Chi-square test. The data were analyzed using SPSS version 23.
Results: Of 720 mandibular second molars of 360 patients, 10% of teeth were found to have C-shaped canals in 48 patients. The most commonly noted C-shaped canal configurations in the coronal and middle third were C1 (41.7%) and C3 (37.5%), respectively, whereas C2 (33.3%) and C4 (33.3%) configurations were commonly found in the apical third. Twenty-four of 48 patients had bilateral C-shaped root canals. Overall, 37.5% of the teeth were right-sided teeth and 62.5% were left-sided teeth. The frequency of C-shaped canals was significantly higher in females as compared to males, 15.6% and 4.2%, respectively (P = 0.03). The longitudinal groove was most commonly located on the lingual surface (66.7%).
Conclusions: The frequency of C-shaped canal configuration in the Pakistani subpopulation was 10% in the mandibular second molar teeth.

Keywords: Cone-beam computed tomography, C-shaped canal, mandibular second molar, Pakistan, root canal configuration


How to cite this article:
Ulfat H, Ahmed A, Javed MQ, Hanif F. Mandibular second molars' C-shaped canal frequency in the Pakistani subpopulation: A retrospective cone-beam computed tomography clinical study. Saudi Endod J 2021;11:383-7

How to cite this URL:
Ulfat H, Ahmed A, Javed MQ, Hanif F. Mandibular second molars' C-shaped canal frequency in the Pakistani subpopulation: A retrospective cone-beam computed tomography clinical study. Saudi Endod J [serial online] 2021 [cited 2021 Dec 4];11:383-7. Available from: https://www.saudiendodj.com/text.asp?2021/11/3/383/325404


  Introduction Top


The inhabitation of microorganisms within the root canal system has been established as the principal contributing factor for irreversible pulpitis, pulp necrosis, and apical periodontitis. Comprehensive endodontic therapy is pivotal for the microbial eradication from the root canals. The success of the endodontic treatment has been attributed to an array of factors, which include the significant knowledge of morphological variations in the root canals.[1] Anatomical diversity of the canal system presents a unique challenge to the clinician during the cleaning, shaping, and obturation of the canals. Therefore, an adequate understanding of the canal configurations and their frequency in a population before initiating the endodontic treatment enhances the quality of the treatment and results in a better long-term prognosis.[1],[2],[3]

C-shaped anatomically variant canals were first documented in the mandibular permanent second molar teeth with single root in a case series by Cox and Cooke, the authors documented continuous C-shaped orifices for two, three, and four root canals.[4] The formation of the C-shaped canal morphology is associated with the fusion failure of the epithelial root sheath of Hertwig (ERSH). Lingual or buccal groove is formed due to the fusion failure of ERSH, on the buccal or lingual side, respectively.[5] There is a racial predilection in the frequency of C-shaped configuration; therefore, variations of the root canal systems are thought to be related to ethnicity and genetic makeup.[6]

Melton et al. classified the C-shaped canal morphology according to shape on the axial cross-section of teeth.[7] Subsequently, Fan et al. modified the Menton's classification and identified five categories based on micro-computed tomography (CT) analysis. The categories identified were (i) C1: continuous “C” with no division or separation, (ii) C2: semi-colon canal shape associated with an interruption in the continuity of “C” outline with either “α” or “β” angle should be no <60°, (iii) C3: 2 or 3 individual root canals with both “α” and “β” angles <60°, (iv) C4: one root canal with an oval or round in horizontal cross-section, and (v) C5: absence of canal lumen, usually noted near the apex.[8]

Endodontic therapy of C-shaped variant of mandibular second permanent molars is a challenging procedure, secondary to the presence of thin walls and narrow isthmuses.[9] Therefore, a detailed understanding of the canal morphology is important both at the diagnostic stage and the treatment stage.[10] Multiple methods have been utilized to investigate the internal anatomical variations of root canal systems, including digital and conventional radiography of extracted teeth, clearing technique with dye injection into the root canals, micro-CT, and spiral computerized tomography.[11],[12],[13],[14]

The utilization of cone-beam CT (CBCT) for the investigation of root canal anatomy has been noted in multiple studies.[15] CBCT offers a three-dimensional, cross-sectional analysis of the complex anatomy of root canals with a low radiation dose.[16] Moreover, it is noninvasive, more accurate method as compared to the CT and conventional two-dimensional intraoral periapical radiographs when investigating the possible presence of morphological variants of roots and canal systems that include the number of roots and presence of apical deltas, accessory canals, and canal calcifications.[17]

Numerous studies have been conducted by utilizing the CBCT to ascertain the C-shaped canals' frequency in mandibular second permanent molars.[15],[16] However, to date, no relevant study has been conducted in Pakistan. Consequently, there is a dearth of literature on the Pakistani population, in this respect. Therefore, the objective of the current study was to determine the C-shaped root canals' frequency in the mandibular second permanent molars among the Pakistani subpopulation by utilizing CBCT images. In addition, the presence of bilateral C-shaped canals, longitudinal grooves' location, and gender-based differences in frequency of C-shaped canals were investigated.


  Materials and Methods Top


The current cross-sectional study was conducted at the Department of Endodontics, College of Dentistry, Riphah International University, Islamabad, Pakistan, from August to December 2019. The ethical approval was obtained from the Institutional Review Board of Dental Faculty at Riphah International University (Reference no: IIDC/IRC/2017/004/002). The archived CBCT radiographs of 720 mandibular permanent second molars from 360 patients who underwent diagnostic scanning, from January 2015 to January 2017 were obtained from a large private diagnostic facility, Islamabad Diagnostic Center. Random sampling technique was utilized. The sample size was calculated using the Australian Bureau of Statistics sample size calculator.[18] Estimating an anticipated population proportion of 50% with a confidence level of 99% and confidence interval of 0.05, a sample size of 664 teeth was calculated. For the purpose of this study, a sample of 720 mandibular second molars was used. The scans containing mandibular second molars bilaterally with closed apices were included in the study. Conversely, the teeth with sclerosed canals, open apices, periapical periodontitis, endodontic treatment, and crown were excluded from the study.

CBCT machine utilized was “Planmeca Promax-3D max” (Planmeca, Finland) with a voxel size of 200 μm, field of view of 5–26 cm, KVp = 96, and mA = 9. CBCT images were evaluated using PLANMECA ROMEXIS Version 4.6.0.R viewer software in a Hewlett Packard Pavilion dv6 laptop with 16″ liquid-crystal display screen, with a resolution of 1366 × 768 pixels in a dark room. The contrast and brightness of the image was adjusted using the image processing tool in the software to ensure optimal visualization. Before commencing evaluation, calibration was done among the two evaluators, both endodontists with a clinical experience of more than 5 years, to exclude inter-evaluator bias and enhance intra-evaluator reliability. Inter-evaluator reliability was determined by analyzing the initial 30 mandibular permanent second molars for the presence of C-shaped canal. Intra-evaluator reliability was assessed by the reevaluation of the same teeth sample after a week. The kappa test was utilized to determine the intra- and inter-evaluator reliability. In case of differences of interpretation among the two evaluators, the CBCT image was analyzed by the consultant radiologist. The cross-sections of the C-shaped canals were analyzed at three levels: (a) coronal: “2 mm” below the canal orifice, (b) middle: the root length from canal orifice to radiographic apex divided by two, and (c) apical: coronal to radiographic apex by 2 mm. Then, these root canals were classified based on the Fan et al. classification.[8] In addition, the longitudinal groove on the lingual or buccal surface of the root was also evaluated.

Statistical analysis

The data were analyzed by using SPSS 23 (IBM Corp,32 Armonk, N.Y., USA). Frequency of the different morphological types of C-shaped canal variations was determined according to the Fan's classification[8] and their correlation with gender was measured by utilizing the Chi-square test. Furthermore, the longitudinal grooves' location was noted on CBCT scans. The significance level was set at P < 0.05.


  Results Top


The inter-evaluator reliability, determined by utilizing the Cohen kappa coefficient for the initial 30 teeth evaluated was 85.6% that was an acceptable outcome. CBCT image analysis of 720 mandibular second molars of 360 patients, 183 females (366 teeth) and 177 males (354 teeth), were conducted. Seventy two teeth (10%) of 48 patients were found to have C-shaped root canal configuration. Twenty four of 48 patients had bilateral mandibular second permanent molar teeth with the C-shaped canals [Figure 1]. Overall, 37.5% of C-shaped canals were found in right-sided teeth and 62.5% in left-sided teeth. The patients' age ranged between 17 and 70 years. The C-shaped canals' frequency was higher in females as compared to males, 15.6% and 4.2%, respectively. A statistically significant difference (P = 0.003) was noted in the incidence of the C-shaped canals on the basis of gender. In addition, the canal configurations at three cross-sectional levels (coronal, middle, and apical thirds) were evaluated. The uniform canal morphology from coronal to apical one-third was noted in six teeth. The remaining 66 teeth exhibited variations of Fan's classification along the root length at different cross-sectional levels [Figure 2]. The most commonly noted C-shaped canal configurations in the coronal and middle third were C1 (41.7%) and C3 (37.5%), respectively, whereas C2 (33.3%) and C4 (33.3%) configurations were commonly found in the apical third [Table 1]. The longitudinal groove of mandibular second permanent molar teeth with a C-shaped canal was most commonly located on the lingual side in 48 teeth (66.7%) and least frequently located on the buccal side in 9 teeth (12%). The buccal and lingual presence of LG accounted for 21% (n = 15) of the teeth with C-shaped canals in the current study.
Figure 1: Cone-beam computed tomography radiographic images showing the unilateral/bilateral presence of C-shaped canals in mandibular second permanent molars

Click here to view
Figure 2: Axial sections of mandibular second molars exhibiting the C-shaped canals' subtypes in the current study sample

Click here to view
Table 1: The frequencies of variants of C-shaped root canal configuration at different axial root sections

Click here to view



  Discussion Top


Missed root canals and subsequent inadequate intracanal debridement most commonly lead to the failed endodontic treatment.[19] The positive outcome of endodontic treatment can be anticipated only if all the canals are located, thoroughly cleaned, and obturated three dimensionally.[19] Therefore, it is essential that the clinician should be cognizant of the canal morphology of a specific tooth and its variations in different ethnic groups. This allows the clinician to optimally identify and negotiate the teeth with anatomical variations with achievement of positive treatment outcomes.[20] The possibility of incurring procedural error is significantly increased in teeth with an atypical root canal system. The errors include canal perforation, ledge formation, and apical zipping.[20]

A CBCT scan enables the clinician to evaluate tooth anatomy in three planes: (a) sagittal, (b) axial, and (c) coronal. The planes can be visualized in thin slices, enhancing the CBCT scan's precision for the identification of variations in the canal system and peri-apical tissues that was unattainable previously.[21] Furthermore, the CBCT is noninvasive in comparison to the alternative in vitro methodologies like the clearing technique.[12]

The frequency of C-shaped canal configuration in the mandibular second permanent molars is high among the Asian population in comparison with other ethnicities.[13] A considerable number of studies have documented the frequency of C-shaped root canals in mandibular second molars and ethnic variation in the C-shaped canals frequency is evident.[22],[23],[24],[25],[26],[27],[28],[29] The C-shaped canal is most prevalent in the Korean population ranging from 31% to 45%.[9]

The frequency of C-shaped canal was 10% in the present study. The findings were comparable to the results reported by Wadhwani et al. (9.6%) in the Indian Population[22] and in line with those documented in Saudi and Turkish population by Alfawaz et al. (9.1%) and Helvacioglu-Yigit and Sinanoglu (8.9%), respectively.[23],[24] Conversely, the high frequency of C-shaped canals was reported by Kim et al. (40%) in the Korean population and Janani et al. (21.4%) in the Iranian population.[15],[16] On the other hand, the low frequency was noted in the Israeli (4.6%) and Brazilian (3.5%) population.[25],[26]

The outcome of the current study suggested that if the mandibular second permanent molar presented a C-shaped canal anatomy, the probability of the similar variation in the contralateral quadrant was 50%, consistent with the findings of Alfawaz et al. (46.2%).[23] Conversely, Janani et al. (57.1%) and Zheng et al. (81%) noted a higher frequency of bilateral C-shaped canals in the Iranian and Chinese population, respectively.[16],[27]

Literature has quite a few studies evaluating the correlation between gender and C-shaped canal frequency.[16] The current study noted a statistically significant difference between the frequency of C-shaped canals in the male (4.2%) and female (15.6%) subjects (P < 0.05) with women having a significantly higher frequency. The results are similar to the findings reported by other researchers.[23],[28] Contrary to this, no significant correlation was found between the Chinese and Turkish population.[24],[27] In addition, the axial cross-sectional form was assessed at the apical, middle, and coronal thirds. Six teeth (8.3%) showed a similar configuration at all three levels that were in line with the results reported by Janani et al.[16] The most commonly noted C-shaped canal configurations in the apical, middle, and coronal third were C4/C2, C3, and C1, respectively, that was different from the findings of Alfawaz et al. and Kim et al. who reported the C3 configuration as the most prevalent configuration at all root levels.[15],[23]

Moreover, the present study also assessed the location of longitudinal groove. In 67% of the teeth with C-shaped canal configuration, the groove was found to be on the lingual side. The studies reported similar findings in the Portuguese, Turkish, and Saudi population.[23],[24],[28] The knowledge of longitudinal groove location is of significant importance as it enables the clinician to avoid strip perforation during root canal instrumentation.[29]

This is the first study conducted on the Pakistani subpopulation to assess the frequency of C-shaped canal configuration in the mandibular second molar teeth using CBCT. The results of the study can be applied to the clinical endodontic practice for enhancing the quality of patient care and reducing treatment failures. The main limitation of the current research is that the CBCT images were evaluated at a single center. Future multicenter studies are recommended with a larger sample size both in Pakistan and in other ethnic groups where the data are lacking in this regard.


  Conclusions Top


The outcome of the current study noted considerable morphological variations at distinct cross-sections of the teeth roots with C-shaped canal morphology. Within the study limitations, the utilization of CBCT technique is useful for assessing the location of longitudinal groove, frequency, and morphology of C-shaped canal system. Therefore, when the preoperative intraoral periapical radiograph suggests the presence of C-shaped canal, the clinician should consider the utilization of CBCT imaging technique for a better understanding of the canal morphology.

Acknowledgment

The authors are grateful to the Islamabad Diagnostic Center and College of Dentistry, Riphah International University for their support during this study.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

 
  References Top

1.
de Pablo OV, Estevez R, Péix Sánchez M, Heilborn C, Cohenca N. Root anatomy and canal configuration of the permanent mandibular first molar: A systematic review. J Endod 2010;36:1919-31.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Vertucci FJ. Root canal anatomy of the human permanent teeth. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol 1984;58:589-99.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Al-Shehri S, Al-Nazhan S, Shoukry S, Al-Shwaimi E, Al-Shemmery B. Root and canal configuration of the maxillary first molar in a Saudi subpopulation: A cone-beam computed tomography study. Saudi Endod J 2017;7:69-76.  Back to cited text no. 3
  [Full text]  
4.
Cooke HG 3rd, Cox FL. C-shaped canal configurations in mandibular molars. J Am Dent Assoc 1979;99:836-9.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Kato A, Ziegler A, Higuchi N, Nakata K, Nakamura H, Ohno N. Aetiology, incidence and morphology of the C-shaped root canal system and its impact on clinical endodontics. Int Endod J 2014;47:1012-33.  Back to cited text no. 5
    
6.
Song JS, Choi HJ, Jung IY, Jung HS, Kim SO. The prevalence and morphologic classification of distolingual roots in the mandibular molars in a Korean population. J Endod 2010;36:653-7.  Back to cited text no. 6
    
7.
Melton DC, Krell KV, Fuller MW. Anatomical and histological features of C-shaped canals in mandibular second molars. J Endod 1991;17:384-8.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.
Fan B, Cheung GS, Fan M, Gutmann JL, Bian Z. C-shaped canal system in mandibular second molars: Part I--Anatomical features. J Endod 2004;30:899-903.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
9.
Seo MS, Park DS. C-shaped root canals of mandibular second molars in a Korean population: Clinical observation and in vitro analysis. Int Endod J 2004;37:139-44.  Back to cited text no. 9
    
10.
Gutman JL, Fan B. Tooth morphology, isolation and access In: Hargreaves KM, Berman LH, editors. Cohen's Pathways of the Pulp. 11th ed.. Missouri: Elsevier Health Sciences; 2015. p. 165.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.
Matherne RP, Angelopoulos C, Kulild JC, Tira D. Use of cone-beam computed tomography to identify root canal systems in vitro. J Endod 2008;34:87-9.  Back to cited text no. 11
    
12.
Khan M, Khan RM, Javed MQ, Ahmed A. Root canal configuration of the mesio-buccal root of maxillary first permanent molars in local population. JIIMC 2018;13:210-14.  Back to cited text no. 12
    
13.
Cheung GS, Yang J, Fan B. Morphometric study of the apical anatomy of C-shaped root canal systems in mandibular second molars. Int Endod J 2007;40:239-46.  Back to cited text no. 13
    
14.
Cimilli H, Cimilli T, Mumcu G, Kartal N, Wesselink P. Spiral computed tomographic demonstration of C-shaped canals in mandibular second molars. Dentomaxillofac Radiol 2005;34:164-7.  Back to cited text no. 14
    
15.
Kim SY, Kim BS, Kim Y. Mandibular second molar root canal morphology and variants in a Korean subpopulation. Int Endod J 2016;49:136-44.  Back to cited text no. 15
    
16.
Janani M, Rahimi S, Jafari F, Johari M, Nikniaz S, Ghasemi N. Anatomic features of C-shaped mandibular second molars in a selected iranian population using CBCT. Iran Endod J 2018;13:120-5.  Back to cited text no. 16
    
17.
Patel S, Dawood A, Ford TP, Whaites E. The potential applications of cone beam computed tomography in the management of endodontic problems. Int Endod J 2007;40:818-30.  Back to cited text no. 17
    
18.
Australian Bureau of Statistics. Sample Size Calculator; c2020. Available from: https://www.abs.gov.au/websitedbs/d3310114.nsf/home/sample+size+calculator. [Last accessed on 2020 Dec 22].  Back to cited text no. 18
    
19.
Nazeer MR, Khan FR. Evaluation of the root and canal morphology of mandibular first permanent molars in a sample of Pakistani population by cone-beam computed tomography. J Pak Med Assoc 2019;69:1084-9.  Back to cited text no. 19
    
20.
Lin LM, Skribner JE, Gaengler P. Factors associated with endodontic treatment failures. J Endod 1992;18:625-7.  Back to cited text no. 20
    
21.
D'addazio P, Carvalho A, Campos C, Devito K, Özcan M. Cone beam computed tomography in endodontics. Int Endod J 2016;49:311-12.  Back to cited text no. 21
    
22.
Wadhwani S, Singh MP, Agarwal M, Somasundaram P, Rawtiya M, Wadhwani PK. Prevalence of C-shaped canals in mandibular second and third molars in a central India population: A cone beam computed tomography analysis. J Conserv Dent 2017;20:351-4.  Back to cited text no. 22
[PUBMED]  [Full text]  
23.
Alfawaz H, Alqedairi A, Alkhayyal AK, Almobarak AA, Alhusain MF, Martins JNR. Prevalence of C-shaped canal system in mandibular first and second molars in a Saudi population assessed via cone beam computed tomography: a retrospective study. Clin Oral Investig 2019;23:107-12.  Back to cited text no. 23
    
24.
Helvacioglu-Yigit D, Sinanoglu A. Use of cone-beam computed tomography to evaluate C-shaped root canal systems in mandibular second molars in a Turkish subpopulation: a retrospective study. Int Endod J 2013;46:1032-8.  Back to cited text no. 24
    
25.
Shemesh A, Levin A, Katzenell V, Itzhak JB, Levinson O, Avraham Z, et al. C-shaped canals-prevalence and root canal configuration by cone beam computed tomography evaluation in first and second mandibular molars-a cross-sectional study. Clin Oral Investig 2017;21:2039-44.  Back to cited text no. 25
    
26.
Silva EJ, Nejaim Y, Silva AV, Haiter-Neto F, Cohenca N. Evaluation of root canal configuration of mandibular molars in a Brazilian population by using cone-beam computed tomography: an in vivo study. J Endod 2013;39:849-52.  Back to cited text no. 26
    
27.
Zheng Q, Zhang L, Zhou X, Wang Q, Wang Y, Tang L, et al. C-shaped root canal system in mandibular second molars in a Chinese population evaluated by cone-beam computed tomography. Int Endod J 2011;44:857-62.  Back to cited text no. 27
    
28.
Martins JNR, Mata A, Marques D, Caramês J. Prevalence of C-shaped mandibular molars in the Portuguese population evaluated by cone-beam computed tomography. Eur J Dent 2016;10:529-35.  Back to cited text no. 28
[PUBMED]  [Full text]  
29.
Jin GC, Lee SJ, Roh BD. Anatomical study of C-shaped canals in mandibular second molars by analysis of computed tomography. J Endod 2006;32:10-3.  Back to cited text no. 29
    


    Figures

  [Figure 1], [Figure 2]
 
 
    Tables

  [Table 1]



 

Top
 
 
  Search
 
Similar in PUBMED
 Related articles
Access Statistics
Email Alert *
Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)

 
  In this article
Abstract
Introduction
Materials and Me...
Results
Discussion
Conclusions
References
Article Figures
Article Tables

 Article Access Statistics
    Viewed216    
    Printed6    
    Emailed0    
    PDF Downloaded35    
    Comments [Add]    

Recommend this journal