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Root Canals

Shadow on bone of x-ray?

12/10/2008

Question:

I had a root canal on my lower left molar about 6 years ago. Apparently it was a pretty deep root canal. I just had some xrays done for a routine exam and they noticed a shadow on the bone right under the root canal. The dentist said he would send it to the endodontist and get back to me as he wasn`t sure what it was. Didn`t sound too concerned but I`m wondering if it could possibly be scar tissue or if you`ve ever seen something like that??

thanks!

Answer:

I wouldn't worry; it sounds like you are doing what you should (having an evaluation done by an endodontist). Usually when someone refers to a "shadow" in the bone they are describing an area that is darker than the surrounding areas (decreased radiodensity) on the radiograph.

This could be any number of things from normal anatomy to something related to your root canal healing (which can include scar tissue).

This is a common issue that endodontists see on a daily basis, so your appointment should help clear things up.

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Response by:

Melissa McCartney Drum, DDS, MS Melissa McCartney Drum, DDS, MS
Assistant Professor of Endodontics
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University