Neurological complications following extrusion of sodium hypochlorite solution during root canal treatment


Prof. P. A. Brennan, Maxillofacial Unit, Queen Alexandra Hospital, Portsmouth PO6 3LY, UK (Tel.: 02392 286064; fax: 02392 286089; e-mail:



Aim  To report the presentation and management of two cases with neurological complications secondary to the extrusion of sodium hypochlorite solution into the facial soft tissues during root canal treatment.

Summary  The clinical features, with particular emphasis on nerve deficit following inadvertent extrusion of sodium hypochlorite, are discussed and its management highlighted. Early and aggressive treatment is advocated following such incidents in order to reduce potentially serious complications.

Key learning points

  • Neurological sequelae can follow inadvertent hypochlorite extrusion.
  • Early recognition may avert a potentially more serious outcome.
  • Active hospital treatment including intravenous steroids and antibiotics is recommended.