Causes of dental pulp calcification
Dental pulp calcification has several causes. This page is for dentists to use as a quick reference for the non-traditional reasons, usually a medical condition.
What do calcified dental pulp chambers look like?
If you are a dentist this section is not important, as I am sure you are well aware of what calcification looks like.
What are the causes of dental pulp calcification?
There are several reasons that a pulp chamber will have calcification. The most common that dentists see everyday all day is local trauma or natural aging. Since those are common and known to all dentists I will not touch on those causes. The other causes are medical in nature.
- Kidney disease
- Dentiogenesis imprefecta
- Dentin Dysplasia
- Cardiovascular disease (CVD)
- Paget’s disease
Kindey and renal lithiasis
If the kidney is the reason for the calcification they will know they have kidney disease as the disease needs to be chronic to have noticeable pulp calcification. There is a lot of research on kidney function and dental pulp chamber calcification. Many studies show that there is a correlation between kidney stones and dental pulp stones, if there are several stones. IEJ 2018 Furthermore, a systemic review and meta-analysis shows an association exists. Gabardo JOE 2019 Chronic renal disease results in more calcification of the dental pulp chamber. JOE 91 In particular renal artery calcification has a high correlation to pulp stones.
Patient will likely know about DI or osteogenesis or know of a family issue with one of these. One sign of dentiogenesis imprefecta is total obliteration of the pulp chamber due to calcification of dentin. Ask about family history of this and osteogenesis imperfecta too, as there is an association.
Dentin dysplasia is a rare disease and you would be able to differentiate it from other forms of calcification because the roots have deformations.
Cardiovascular disease and pulp stones
Cardiovascular disease (CVD) has a correlation to higher levels of calcification in teeth. J Dentistry 2013 This makes sense as we tend to see higher levels of calcification everywhere in those with CVD. To what extent this is actually beneficial as a diagnostic tool seems very obscure to me.
Hyperparathyroidism causes hypercalcaemia which results in pulpal calcification.
How do we treat pulp chamber calcification?
We don’t treat pulp chamber calcification. If anything it is helpful to us as it shields the tooth from feeling decay, dental work and other trauma. The calcification helps prevent people from having painful teeth and needing root canals.