Authors: Buchanan LS.
Title: The continuous wave of obturation technique: 'centered' condensation of warm gutta percha in 12 seconds.
Journal: Dent Today
Date: Jan 1996
Citation: 15(1):60-2, 64-7
Category: Obturation
Evidence-based Ranking: 5
Purpose/Objectives: To present the “Continuous Wave” technique.

Summary: The continuous wave technique of obturation was introduced by Dr. Steve Buchanan in 1994 as a result of his modifications in instruments and techniques on the original technique of warm vertical condensation. The technique differs from warm vertical condensation in that it requires a System B plugger instrument as well as modifications in the method that the condensation is completed. As with any method of obturation its success is completely dependant upon the cleaning and shaping of the root canal system. The steps for the Continuous Wave are as follows.

1.Following the master cone selection and fitting, a properly cleaned and shaped root canal is dried and prepared for obturation. 2.A System B plugger that fits to 3 mm of working length without binding is selected and placed in the plugger hand piece. 3.The master cone is coated with sealer and seated to length in the canal. 4.The System B plugger is placed at the canal orifice and activated. While holding on the heat activator the plugger is advanced apically. 5.At 6mm from the working length the heat activator is released and the apical advance of the plugger is continued up to 3mm from the working length. 6.Apical pressure is held for 10 seconds to allow the apical plug of gutta-percha to cool without shrinking. 7.Heat is activated for 1 second, providing a separation bust of heat, and the plugger is removed from the canal with the excess gutta-percha adhered to the plugger. 8.The canal can be left as-is for post placement or can be obturated with an Obtura II gun or with any number of backfilling techniques.

Author’s Conclusion: The continuous wave technique is a faster, more efficient, and more effective method of obturation than other techniques currently in use.

Validity of Conclusion: Validity depends on the operator and required instruments.

Reviewer’s Comments: The technique is presented in an easily understood format.