Home | About Us | Editorial Board | Current Issue | Archives | Search | Instructions | Subscription | Feedback | e-Alerts | Login 
Journal of Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry Official publication of Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry
 Users Online: 990  
  Print this page Email this page   Small font sizeDefault font sizeIncrease font size

Year : 2007  |  Volume : 25  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 34-36

Treatment of severely mutilated incisors: A challenge to the pedodontist

Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, V. S. Dental College and Hospital, V. V. Puram, Bangalore - 560 004, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
M Usha
Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, V. S. Dental College and Hospital, K. R. Road, V. V. Puram, Bangalore - 560 004, Karnataka
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 17921639

Rights and PermissionsRights and Permissions



Dental caries is the single most common chronic childhood disease. In early childhood caries, there is early carious involvement and gross destruction of the maxillary anterior teeth. This leads to difficulty in speech, decreased masticatory efficiency, development of abnormal tongue habits and subsequent malocclusion and psychological problems if esthetics are compromised. The restoration of severely decayed primary incisors is often a difficult procedure that presents a special challenge to pediatric dentists. This case report documents the restoration of severely mutilated lateral incisors in a patient with early childhood caries.

Keywords: Composite resin, early childhood caries, post, primary anterior teeth

How to cite this article:
Usha M, Deepak V, Venkat S, Gargi M. Treatment of severely mutilated incisors: A challenge to the pedodontist. J Indian Soc Pedod Prev Dent 2007;25, Suppl S1:34-6

How to cite this URL:
Usha M, Deepak V, Venkat S, Gargi M. Treatment of severely mutilated incisors: A challenge to the pedodontist. J Indian Soc Pedod Prev Dent [serial online] 2007 [cited 2022 Dec 6];25, Suppl S1:34-6. Available from: http://www.jisppd.com/text.asp?2007/25/5/34/34745

   Introduction Top

A problem commonly faced in pediatric clinics is the restoration of primary maxillary incisors severely destroyed by trauma or caries. Most cases are observed among children with nursing bottle caries. [1],[2],[3] In early childhood caries, there is early carious involvement of the maxillary anterior teeth. [4] Premature loss of carious primary incisors may affect the speech by interfering with the pronunciation of consonants and labial sounds, decreased masticatory efficiency, abnormal tongue habits and potentially subsequent malocclusion. The child may also suffer from psychological problems if esthetics are compromised. [5] The restoration of primary incisors is often a difficult procedure that presents a special challenge to dental surgeons. [6]

The esthetic restoration of severely mutilated primary anterior teeth has for a long time been a challenge for the pediatric dentist, not only because of the available materials and techniques, but also because the children who require such restorations are usually among the youngest and least manageable group of patients. Added to this, these teeth usually have short and narrow crowns, thus only a small surface is available for bonding, pulp chamber that is relatively large and enamel that is inherently difficult to acid etch due to its aprismatic nature. In many cases, destruction of the whole crown occurs leaving only dentine in the root for bonding. So, in the past and even now, many of these teeth are extracted. [7]

A restorative technique that is able to provide efficient, durable and functional restorations, that is simple to perform would enhance the management of patients presenting with carious maxillary primary incisors. Such a technique could help to ensure the child's cooperation and reduce the anxiety associated with restorative treatment. [6] Because of the reduced coronal structure, direct restorative procedures do not always give satisfactory results. Shape, function and esthetics can be better restored by means of prosthodontic techniques. The child's growth and development may be improved. [8]

This case report describes the challenging task of treating a four-year-old early childhood caries patient with mutilated maxillary incisors with composite resin using a custom made post made with 0.7 mm wire to increase the potential surface area for attachment of the restorative material and consequently increase the long-term stability of an aesthetic restoration.

   Case Report Top

A four-year-old female patient reported to the Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, V. S. Dental College and Hospital, Bangalore with a complaint of severely decayed teeth. The child was shy and withdrawn.

On examination

Intra-oral examination revealed a complete set of deciduous dentition in relation to 54,55,53,52,51,61,62,64,65, 85, 84,74,75 were affected by dental caries. Intra-oral periapical radiographs revealed pulp involvement of 54, 51, 61,64,74, 84, 85. 51, 52, 61, 62, 64 were grossly destructed with periapical abscess and mobility in relation to 51, 61 [Figure - 1]. 51,61,64 showed root resorption. Diet analysis, counseling and oral prophylaxis were done. Fluoride application after temporization were done. Extraction of 51,61,64, and restoration in relation of 55,53,65,75 with Glass Ionomer Cement were done. Pulpotomy and restoration with stainless steel crown in relation to 54, and pulpectomy and restoration with stainless steel crown for 74, 84, 85 were carried out. Pulpectomy with composite restoration using custom made posts of 52, 62 were done. Band and loop space maintainer in relation to 64 and removable space maintainer for 51,61 were given.

Pulpectomy of 52,62 followed by root canal filling with zinc oxide eugenol was carried out along with the other required treatments. About 4 mm of the cement was removed from the coronal end of the root canal and I mm of zinc polycarboxylate cement was placed. A 0.7 mm stainless steel orthodontic wire was bent using no. 130 orthodontic pliers into a loop in such a way as to allow the ends to be hooked in the entrance of the root canal. The incisal end of the loop of the wire projected 2-3 mm above the remaining root structure [Figure - 2],[Figure - 3].

This provided better mechanical retention and support for the restorative material. Shade selection of the composite was made in daylight. After polycarboxylate cement set, the canal was prepared to get a space of about 3 mm. [7] The root canal and the remaining coronal structure was etched with 35% phosphoric acid for 20 sec. Then the bonding agent was placed and cured for 20 seconds. Composite restorative material of the selected shade was placed in the canal. The loop was inserted into the canal with composite. The composite was light cured for 40 sec. A strip crown was used and the crown was reconstructed. The occlusion was checked and after the removal of any interference, final finishing and polishing of the restoration was performed using soflex tips [Figure - 4]. The removable space maintainer was placed to replace the maxillary central incisors [Figure - 5]. This completed the treatment of the full mouth as shown in [Figure - 6],[Figure - 7],[Figure - 8]. The patient was advised to come for regular checkup.

   Discussion Top

Restoring primary anterior teeth that are grossly destructed due to caries is very challenging for the pediatric dentist. There is a high rate of failure not only because of absence of tooth structure, poor adhesion of bonding agent to primary teeth, limited availability of materials and techniques, but also because the children who require such restorations are among the youngest and least manageable group of patients. To provide shape, function and esthetics in such teeth, use of intra-canal retainers is necessary. After endodontic treatment and placement of intra-canal retainers, the remaining coronal structure can be restored with direct or indirect technique or with single tooth prostheses such as celluloid strip crowns, stainless steel crowns, metal plastic crowns, porcelain veneers, polycarbonate crowns and acrylic resin crowns. [8]

Rifkin [9] described restoring primary anterior teeth with post and crown. But it was not widely accepted because of the potential for interference with physiologic root resorption if the wire extends a long way into the root. In addition, it can increase internal stresses within the root leading to fracture if the post is forcibly fitted into a narrow canal.

Threaded posts used in permanent teeth represent an excessive cost for pediatric dentist because it is bought as a kit, which is never totally utilized. Further more, apical tensions may be created, which may lead to root fracture during installation. [8]

Rodrigues et al. [10] have described the use of nickel- chromium cast posts with macro-elements that improved the durability of restorations.

Preformed and cast metal posts have been utilized; however, they are expensive and require an additional lab stage. The use of metal posts need the use of an opaque resin to mask the post and could pose additional problems during the course of natural exfoliation. [6]

More esthetic option may be the use of a biologic post. The disadvantages of this technique include the need of tooth bank, donor and recipient acceptance and stringent cross-control infection policies. [6]

Studies have shown that intra-canal retention in primary teeth can be obtained by directly building resin composite posts or preparing an "inverted mushroom shaped" undercut in the root canal prior to the build up of the resin. However, resin composite posts have low strength of loading. [8]

Motisuki et al. [6] have restored severely decayed primary teeth using an indirect composite resin restoration using fiberglass post. This technique was expensive and required lab work.

Mortada and King [8] have shown success with the use of direct composite restoration reinforced with mechanically retained orthodontic wire. This led us to use a custom-made post using an orthodontic wire and composite resin to restore mutilated lateral incisors. This technique was easy to perform and achieved excellent cosmetic results. However, it was technique sensitive and required patient cooperation. Also, there was a chance of loss of restoration due to trauma or biting on hard foods. The child, who was shy and withdrawn earlier, was more forthcoming and the restoration was serving well in the five-month recall [Figure - 9].

   Conclusion Top

The direct composite resin restoration using a custom made post with orthodontic wire used in this case report demonstrated good retention and esthetics. It was easy to perform and benefited the child immensely.

   Acknowledgment Top

Staff And PG's, Department of Pedodontics.

   References Top

1.Johnsen DC. Characteristics and background of children with "nursing caries". Pediatr Dent 1982;4:218-24  Back to cited text no. 1  [PUBMED]  
2.Ripa LW. Nursing caries: A comprehensive review. Pediatr Dent 1988;10:268-82  Back to cited text no. 2  [PUBMED]  
3.Yui CK, Wei SH. Management of rampant caries in children. Quintessence Int 1992;23:159-68  Back to cited text no. 3    
4.Mcdonald, Avery, Dean. Dental caries in the child and adolescent. In: Dentistry for the child and adolescent. 8 th ed. Mosby: 2005. p. 209-10  Back to cited text no. 4    
5.Ngan P, Fields H. Orthodontic diagnosis and treatment planning in the primary dentition. ASDC J Dent Child 1995;62:25-33  Back to cited text no. 5  [PUBMED]  
6.Motisuki C, Santos-Pinto L, Giro EM. Restoration of severely decayed primary incisors using indirect composite resin restoration technique. Int J Pediatr Dent 2005;15:282-6  Back to cited text no. 6    
7.Wanderley MT, Ferreira SL, Rodrigues CR, Rodrigues Filho LE. Primary anterior tooth restoration using posts with macroretentive elements. Quintessence Int 1999;30:432-6  Back to cited text no. 7  [PUBMED]  
8.Mortada A, King NM. A simplified technique for the restoration of severely mutilated primary anterior teeth. J Clin Pediatr Dent 2004;28:187-92  Back to cited text no. 8  [PUBMED]  
9.Rifkin A. Composite post crowns in anterior teeth. J Dent Assoc S Afr 1983;38:225-7  Back to cited text no. 9    
10.Rodrigues Filho LE, Bianchi J, Santos JF, Oliveira JA. Clinical evaluation of dental reinforcements by means of metallic posts with macroretentions. J Dent Res 1996;75:1095  Back to cited text no. 10    


  [Figure - 1], [Figure - 2], [Figure - 3], [Figure - 4], [Figure - 5], [Figure - 6], [Figure - 7], [Figure - 8], [Figure - 9]

This article has been cited by
1 Modified intracanal post for severely mutilated primary anterior teeth
Rallan, M. and Rallan, N.S. and Navit, P. and Malhotra, G.
BMJ Case Reports. 2013;
2 Primary zirconia crown restorations for children with early childhood caries [Restauracije mliječnih zuba cirkonijskim krunicama kod djece s ranim karijesom]
Karaca, S. and Ozbay, G. and Kargul, B.
Acta Stomatologica Croatica. 2013; 47(1): 64-71
3 Effects of ultraviolet irradiation on the bond strength of a composite resin adhered to stainless steel crowns
Baeza-Robleto, S.J. and Villa-Negrete, D.M. and García-Contreras, R. and Scougall-Vílchis, R.J. and Guadarrama-Quiroz, L.J. and Robles-Bermeo, N.L.
Pediatric Dentistry. 2013; 35(1): 23-26
4 Wear of dental sealing materials using the replication technique
Tripodi, D. and Filippakos, A. and Piattelli, A. and DErcole, S. and Perrotti, V.
European Journal of Paediatric Dentistry. 2011; 12(2): 95-98
5 Esthetic and functional oral makeover of a 3 year old cleft palate patient suffering from early childhood caries using unconventional techniques
Saini, S. and Sharma, D.
Journal of Clinical and Experimental Dentistry. 2011; 3(2): e158-e161
6 Rehabilitation of severely mutilated teeth under general anesthesia in an emotionally immature child
Navit, S. and Katiyar, A. and Samadi, F. and Jaiswal, J.
Journal of Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry. 2010; 28(1): 42-44


Print this article  Email this article
Previous article Next article


   Next article
   Previous article 
   Table of Contents
    Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
 Related articles
    Article in PDF (64 KB)
    Citation Manager
    Access Statistics
    Reader Comments
    Email Alert *
    Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

    Case Report
    Article Figures

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded1866    
    Comments [Add]    
    Cited by others 6    

Recommend this journal

Contact us | Sitemap | Advertise | What's New | Copyright and Disclaimer | Privacy Notice
  2005 - Journal of Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry | Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow 
Online since 1st May '05