Endodontic Treatment: An Analysis of Demand by Adult Patients in a Tertiary Hospital in Southern Nigeria


  • Collins N. AGHOLOR Department of Restorative Dentistry, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin City, Edo State
  • Matthew A. SEDE Department of Restorative Dentistry, University of Benin Teaching Hospital/University of Benin, Benin City, Edo State


Objective: An increase in dental awareness and need to maintain good oral health, in a growing population
will necessitate an increased demand for root canal treatment (endodontic treatment). In emerging
economies like Nigeria, the trend appears similar to what obtains in more developed economies where
patients are keen on retaining their teeth. The objective was to determine the reasons for endodontic
treatment and pattern of demand for treatment among adult patients attending the Endodontic unit of a
tertiary hospital in Southern Nigeria.
Methods: A retrospective review of all clinical records of adult patients who attended the Endodontic unit of
the Department of Restorative Dentistry, University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH) Edo State, Nigeria
from January 2012 to December 2014 for root canal treatment (RCT). The demographic and clinical data
were retrieved from the patients' records and analyzed using SPSS version 20.
Results: A total of 485 patients, comprising 226(46.6%) males and 259(53.4%) females (a ratio of 1:1.4)
underwent endodontic treatment during the study period. The age range of patients was 18-68 years. In the
studied population, the highest demand for endodontic treatment 219(45.2%) was among the 20-29 years
age range. The commonest indication for RCT was irreversible pulpitis (48.4%). The total number of teeth
treated was 522. More posterior teeth 338(64.8%) were treated than anteriors 184(35.2%). The
mandibular first molar 96(18.4%) was the most frequently treated tooth. More maxillary teeth 332(63.6%)
underwent RCT than mandibular teeth 190(36.4%).Endodontic treatment was mostly completed in
multiple visits 439(84.1%). A total of 279 (57.5%) patients had their treatments covered by the National
Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS). Out of pocket payments accounted for 40.2% of patients who had
endodontic treatment.
Conclusion: There was a greater demand for root canal treatment among female and young adult patients.
Most of the procedures were performed on maxillary teeth while the mandibular first molar was the most
frequently treated tooth.