Introduction: This in vitro study compared the antibacterial efficacy of 2.5% sodium hypochlorite gel and 2.5% and 5.25% sodium hypochlorite solutions on Enterococcus faecalis (E. faecalis) biofilm. Methods and Materials: The root canals of 60 extracted human single-rooted teeth were contaminated with E. faecalis and incubated for 6 weeks. The samples were randomly assigned to three experimental groups and one control group (n=15). The study protocol in the experimental groups consisted of injection of 5 mL of each irrigant into the root canals. Samples were collected from the root canal walls and 1:10 serial dilutions were prepared and added to Muller Hinton Agar (MHA) plates and incubated at 37°C for 48 h. A classic colony counting technique was used for determining vital E. faecalis bacterial counts in MHA plates. The Kruskal-Wallis test was used for statistical analysis of the data. The level of significance was set at 0.05. Results: The antibacterial effect of the irrigants in all three experimental groups was significantly greater than the control group (P<0.05), with no significant difference between 2.5% and 5.25% NaOCl solutions (P>0.05). The effect of 2.5% and 5.25% NaOCl solutions were significantly superior to 2.5% NaOCl gel (P<0.05). Conclusion: Under the limitations of this study, 2.5% NaOCl gel was effective in reducing E. faecalis counts; however this effect was less than that of NaOCl solutions.
Keywords: Antibacterial; Biofilm; Enterococcus Faecalis; Sodium Hypochlorite