This systematic review of in vitro studies investigated the influence of the post-space treatment used to remove the smear layer on the bond strength of the post to root canal dentin.

Methods and Materials:

In vitro studies included in this study were identified from PubMed/MEDLINE, Lilacs, and Scopus databases up until March 2019, without limits on publication year or language. Two reviewers independently selected the studies based on the inclusion and exclusion criteria, extracted the data, and evaluated the risk of bias of all studies. A random effects model was used for pairwise meta-analyses (control vs. post-space preparation groups) at a significance level of p<0.05.


Of the 2,832 potentially eligible studies, 453 studies were selected for full-text analysis, and 75 were included in this systematic review. Only one study was considered to have a low risk of bias. Overall, post-space treatment significantly improves the bond strength to root canal dentin (p<0.00001).


Post-space treatment has a positive influence on the bond strength of the post to root canal dentin. In this review, the post-space treatments that improve the adhesive resistance of the post were ethanol, sodium hypochlorite, and ethylene diamine tetra-acetic acid (NaOCl + EDTA), NaOCl + EDTA + ultrasound, erbium-doped yttrium aluminium garnet laser (Er:YAG laser), neodymium-doped yttrium aluminium garnet laser (Nd:YAG laser), and diode laser.

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