Vertical root fractures (VRF):
- are associated with endodontically treated teeth.
- are commonly directed bucco-lingually.
- are mostly diagnosed by localized probing defects (+/- sinus tract) that are usually present around the fractured root.
- show periradicular bone loss that is more pronounced in the middle and cervical 1/3 compared to the apical 1/3
- are not always detectable clinically (they can happen in the apical, middle or cervical area).
- are associated with the roots that are curved and are wide buccally and lingually but are narrow mesially and distally.
Etiologies: wedging posts, excessive root-dentin removal (using large tapered files, orifice shapers, gates glidden drills, etc.), obturation forces.
If vertical root fracture is detected in single-rooted tooth, it’s game over. In multi-rooted teeth, other options (such as, root amputation or hemisection) can be considered before extraction.