Calcium hydroxide is a slow-acting antiseptic substance used in several forms for the last century in various fields of dentistry. Its applications in endodontics are by far the most meaningful including the treatment of root resorptions and perforations, inducing the apexification process, and most importantly as intracanal medicaments representing a crucial step in the nonsurgical management of large periapical lesions. The aim of this article is to conduct a review of the properties, antimicrobial effect, combination with adjuvant substances, biocompatibility, cytotoxicity, and adverse effects of calcium hydroxide-based dressings as an additional manoeuvre in the conservative treatment of chronic apical periodontitis and to draw attention on the importance of this extra step.
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