Academic Editor: Luigi Santacroce
The fracture of endodontic instruments inside the canal represents a problem that is not always easy to solve. The reutilization of endodontic instruments after sterilization procedures raises the question of how these processes affect their physical and mechanical properties. Alterations can involve the surface of the instruments, as well as their cutting effectiveness, shape and resistance to torsional and cyclic fatigue. The methodology adopted for this systematic review followed the PRISMA guidelines for systematic reviews. The following search terms were used in PubMed and Scopus: “endodontic sterilization”, “endodontic autoclave”, “cyclic fatigue”, “torsional”, “cutting efficiency”, “sterilization”, “surface characteristics” and “corrosion”. After the screening phase, the application of exclusion criteria and the removal of duplicates, 51 studies were identified and divided into four outcomes: cyclic fatigue; deformation and torsional fatigue; corrosion or surface alterations; and cutting efficiency. Our study of the scientific literature highlights disagreements between studies on these effects. After autoclaving, instruments exhibit a reduction in the cutting efficiency, but NiTi alloy instruments have an improved resistance to cyclic and torsional fatigue.