A survey of patients' perceptions about, and their experiences of, root canal treatment

Lahiru Chandraweera, Kelly Goh, Julia Lai-Tong, Janni Newby, Paul Abbott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Web of Science)


Root canal treatment (RCT) is widely perceived to be a painful procedure. There is a lack of data regarding patients' perceptions of RCT within the Australian population. The aims of this pilot study were to investigate the perception of adult Australian patients within the Perth Metropolitan area and to identify how this changes following treatment. Effects of demographic factors on anxiety and pain experience were also explored. Sixty-nine patients were surveyed, of which 28 (41%) completed both pre- and post-treatment surveys. Modified Visual Analogue scales and multiple choice questions identified patient concerns, nervousness and anticipated or experienced pain. Cost (55%) and pain (51%) were the greatest pre-treatment concerns. No expectation of pain was reported by 7% of patients, while 28% reported experiencing no pain during the course of treatment. Results suggest that anticipated pain is greater than pain experienced, and that after the treatment, anxiety for future RCT was significantly reduced.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberaej.12312
Pages (from-to)225-232
Number of pages8
JournalAustralian Endodontic Journal
Issue number2
Early online date19 Oct 2018
Publication statusPublished - 2019


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