Apicoectomy – An overview of endodontic surgery

Why would I need Endodontic Surgery?

Generally, a root canal is all that is needed to save teeth with injured pulp from extraction. Occasionally, this non-surgical procedure will not be sufficient to heal the tooth and we may recommend surgery. Endodontic surgery can be used to locate fractures or hidden canals that do not appear on x-rays but still result in pain in the tooth. Damaged root surfaces or the surrounding bone may also be treated with this procedure. The most common surgery used to save damaged teeth is an apicoectomy (also known as a root end resection).

What is an Apicoectomy?

The video on the right illustrates this simple procedure. The doctor makes an incision is made in the gum tissue to expose the bone and surrounding inflamed tissue. The damaged tissue is removed along with the end of the root tip. A root-end filling is placed to prevent reinfection of the root and the gum tissue is repositioned and sutured. The bone naturally heals around the root over a period of months, restoring full function to your tooth.

Following the procedure, there may be some discomfort or slight swelling while the incision heals, typical of many surgical procedures. To alleviate any discomfort, an appropriate pain medication will be recommended. In addition, we will provide you with thorough instructions on how to care for the area after your surgery.

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