A Prospective Randomized Study

Abstract
Introduction
Few studies have evaluated the effectiveness of the Gow-Gates and Vazirani-Akinosi techniques in patients presenting with symptomatic irreversible pulpitis. Therefore, the purpose of this prospective, randomized study was to evaluate the anesthetic efficacy of the Gow-Gates and Vazirani-Akinosi techniques using 3.6 mL 2% lidocaine with 1:100,000 epinephrine in mandibular posterior teeth in patients presenting with symptomatic irreversible pulpitis.

Methods
One hundred twenty-five emergency patients diagnosed with symptomatic irreversible pulpitis randomly received either a Gow-Gates or Vazirani-Akinosi injection using 3.6 mL 2% lidocaine with 1:100,000 epinephrine to block the inferior alveolar nerve before endodontic access. Subjective lip numbness was recorded. Pulpal anesthetic success of the injection was defined as no pain or mild pain upon endodontic access and instrumentation as measured on a visual analog scale.

Results
Subjective lip numbness was obtained 92% of the time with the Gow-Gates technique and 63% of the time with the Vazirani-Akinosi technique. The difference was statistically significant (P = .0001). For the patients achieving lip numbness, successful pulpal anesthesia was obtained 35% of the time with the Gow-Gates technique and 16% of the time with the Vazirani-Akinosi technique. The difference was statistically significant (P = .0381).

Conclusions
We concluded that for patients who achieved lip numbness neither the Gow-Gates technique nor the Vazirani-Akinosi technique provided adequate pulpal anesthesia for mandibular posterior teeth in patients presenting with symptomatic irreversible pulpitis. Both injections would require supplemental anesthesia.