Introduction: Although selective caries tissue removal decreases the number and diversity of bacteria, stops the caries process, and reduces the risk of pulp exposure, the studies on the minimally removal of caries tissue are limited and further clinical research is necessary in this field.
Aim: This study aimed to evaluate through clinical and radiographic assessments the in vivo response of the dentin–pulp complex of human deciduous teeth after either partial or total caries removal (TCR).
Materials and methods: A total of 49 deciduous molars of children aged between 5 and 9 years were carefully selected. The teeth were divided into two groups: Group I: Partial removal of caries; group II: Total removal of caries. Clinical and radiographic evaluations were performed during the period of 4 to 6 months after the procedure. The intraexaminer reproducibility was determined by Kappa test. Fisher's exact test was used to determine the statistical difference between groups.
Results: All teeth showed clinical success during the 4- to 6-month evaluation period. The radiographic evaluation showed 94.2 and 89.6% of success rate in groups I and II respectively. Radiographic results did not show statistically significant differences between the studied groups (p > 0.05).
Conclusion: The partial caries removal (PCR) showed satisfactory clinical and radiographic outcomes, suggesting that this minimally invasive approach might replace the TCR when correctly indicated.
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