In dental school, we used a lot of an old, legacy pulp cap material. That old-fashioned calcium hydroxide paste might be my least favorite product of all time. We have all used it for decades, and all been frustrated by it. It is difficult to mix, difficult to apply to the tooth, and difficult to make stick to the area you need it. While it served dentistry for many years, it’s time to retire that old mixable calcium hydroxide paste and try something easier to use!
Calcicur is a ready-to-use calcium hydroxide liner that comes in an easy-to-use syringe. A small gauge canula tip is attached to the syringe of Calcicur and applied directly to the desired area of the preparation. Calcicur should be applied in thin layers until the desired thickness is achieved. Allow a brief moment of drying between each layer or before moving on to bonding steps.
Calcicur can be manipulated for a few moments on the tooth, either with an instrument or with the applicator tip on the Calcicur syringe. As with any liner material, there should not be any Calcicur applied to an area where bonding is vital. That should rarely be a problem as typically we use Calcicur in deep areas. However, this should serve as a word of caution to be neat and targeted with the application of Calcicur.
The main indication for Calcicur is for indirect pulp-capping where there are deep caries. Calcicur can also be used for direct pulp-capping procedures, as long as hemostasis can be obtained before application. It can be used as a liner under restorations for those who practice that style of dentistry. Calcicur can also be used as a temporary filling material for root canal therapy; it should be injected into the canal, and then taken to length with a Lentulo spiral.
The main benefit of Calcicur is its ease of use. It’s effective as a liner under any restorative material, bonded or not. It has a great antimicrobial effect due to the high pH value of 12.5. Calcicur is 45% calcium hydroxide and is also very radiopaque (170%). The main effect of
Calcicur is to promote the formation of tertiary dentin, protecting the pulp from insult.
Procedures where we need to use pulp caps are stressful. We are dealing with deep caries, and we’re trying our darnedest to not pulp the tooth. Using a material that is difficult to use and place just adds to the stress. Let’s shift to modern materials that give us the same effect, but in an easier-to-use package.
Joshua Austin, DDS, MAGD, is a graduate and former faculty member of the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio School of Dentistry. Author of Dental Economics’ Pearls for Your Practice column, Dr. Austin lectures nationally on products, dental technology, online reputation management, and social media. He maintains a full-time restorative dentistry private practice in San Antonio, Texas. You may contact Dr. Austin at .
Editor's note: This article appeared in the November 2023 print edition of Dental Economics magazine. Dentists in North America are eligible for a complimentary print subscription. Sign up here.