Clinical Solution

The Glidepath – And Why It’s Important

By Dr. Barry H. Korzen

As John West said in his 2010 Dentistry Today article: The Endodontic Glidepath: “Secret to Rotary Safety” 

“The ADA estimates that most dentists treat an average of 2 endodontic teeth per week. If we assume there are at least 2 canals per tooth, 47 treatment weeks per year for 25 years, then most dentists will attempt approximately 5,000 Glidepaths in their career: 2 root canals per week x 2 canals per tooth x 47 weeks x 25 years = approximately 5,000 Glidepath attempts.
The amazing fact is that the subject of Glidepath has no formal training in the endodontic curricula of most dental schools. In fact, a PubMed Central search of Glidepath and endodontics reveals 300 references. However, none of them actually describe how to prepare a Glidepath. Most of the references say something like, “Of course you must first make a Glidepath.” That’s all. And so the purpose of this article is to serve as a reference guide for endodontic Glidepath preparation and answer the following questions: What is it? Why is it important? How do you predictably prepare the Glidepath?”

Zendo Pathfinder Files™ ( are based on an innovative design to help the clinician safely save time. The superior cross-section of the Pathfinder Files™ combines efficiency and innovation. Along the length of the instrument, the P-File™ has cutting edges on three different radiuses leaving a large and efficient area for coronal debris removal. Used after hand files have measured working length, P-Files™ safely enlarge the glide path in preparation for RCT with rotary instrumentation.



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