Root canal surgeries, also known as apicoectomies, are often performed to retain teeth with persistent infection around the root tips. After root canals and/or a retreatment has been completed and persistent infection continues, a surgical procedure with the removal of the root tip and surrounding tissues may be recommended. This can create a healthier environment to preserve the natural tooth.
Root canal surgery is available at Tranquility Dental Spa in Bellaire and the surrounding area. We can handle all your endodontic and dental needs. Call us today at 832-998-8372 to schedule an appointment or learn more about our services.
Root canal procedures are often necessary to treat the root canal system of teeth that have become infected or necrotic. Though most root canal treatments are successful, some complications may still emerge. Retreatments are completed if the root canal system becomes re-infected after root canal therapy is completed. Alternatively, some patients may have cases that are too complex to be treated with less involved procedures. In such cases, apicoectomies may be a viable option.
Apicoectomy is a type of endodontic surgery that attempts to preserve a patient’s natural tooth after exhausting all non-surgical options. During the procedure, the endodontist will provide anesthesia for pain control, flap the gum tissue around the tooth and examine the underlying bone. Then, an osteotomy (hole) will be created in the bone surrounding the root tip and the tip of the root along with any surrounding infected tissue will be removed. During the endodontic surgery, the microscope will be used to locate any fractures or hidden canals that do not appear on the x-ray. Finally, the endodontist will seal the tooth root with a small filling material and place a few sutures to stabilize the gum tissue. This will get rid of the infection in the root tip, bone and surrounding tissue. The bone will heal around the end of the root over a few months.
When Apicoectomies Are Necessary
There are many different types of endodontic surgery, with apicoectomy being the most common. There are several reasons a patient may need an apicoectomy. Some of the most common are persistent infection in the bone surrounding the root tip, calcification of the canal, over-extended root canal material, root fracture or resorption. The complexities of each case will be determined and the success rate of the treatment will be discussed. Patients will be informed of any risk and benefits of the treatment in order to make an informed decision.
Preparing for Apicoectomies
An initial consultation with an endodontist must precede every apicoectomy. The endodontist will perform a medical history review, a clinical exam and review the xray to determine whether apicoectomy is the best decision for a patient. It is crucial for patients to maintain an open and honest dialogue with their endodontist when preparing for surgery. As part of this process, they should be forthcoming about any medications, vitamins, or supplements they may be taking.
Withholding any of this information may negatively affect the outcome of the surgery. If the patient is undergoing any concurrent treatment for other compromising medical conditions, the endodontist may need to consult with their other physicians. All of the above is necessary for optimal results.
What to Know About Apicoectomies
The more patients understand what to expect from an apicoectomy, the more prepared they will be. Modern technologies, such as 3D Cone Beam digital imaging and operating microscopes, allow endodontists to complete surgeries more efficiently and successfully than ever before. As such, they can rest assured that they are in safe hands.
Recovering After Apicoectomies
The endodontist and the team will review the post-operative complications and instructions before you leave the office. Some stitches or sutures will be necessary to assist in tissue healing. Though the surrounding bone will take a few months to heal, most patients can return to everyday activities as soon as a day after surgery.
During the recovery process, any pain or discomfort is usually mild and easily manageable with over-the-counter or prescribed pain medications. Patients who are experiencing any persistent or concerning pain should contact their endodontist immediately. They should also take care to follow all post-operative instructions as provided by their endodontist.
Call Us Today
For many people, root canal surgeries can be the last viable option to save a natural tooth. The team at Tranquility Dental Spa can help. Call us today at 832-998-8372 to schedule an appointment or learn more about our services.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do apicoectomies hurt?
During the procedure, anesthesia will be used for pain control. You may experience some minor pain or swelling, which is to be expected with any surgery. Postoperative pain will be managed with the use of prescribed or over the counter pain medications and/or antibiotics. It is important to following all the post-operative instructions in order to minimize any discomfort.
Can I drive myself home after my apicoectomy?
This varies on a case by case basis. During the consultation before the day of the surgery, this will be discussed with the endodontist. This will allow you enough time to make any necessary travel arrangements.
Are there any alternatives to apicoectomies?
Tooth extraction is typically the only alternative to apicoectomies. It is always best to preserve the natural teeth, as any viable tooth option must allow the patient to maintain tooth function and prevent shifting.
How should I take care of my teeth after my apicoectomy?
With endodontic treatment, teeth should last as long as natural teeth without any special care. Standard oral hygiene practices should still apply: brush and floss regularly and use Listerine mouthrinse.
When can I eat solid food again?
It is best to stick to soft foods and cool liquids for the first few days following an apicoectomy. Avoid hot drinks and hard or crunchy foods for the first eight to 10 days. Otherwise, you may end up irritating the surgical area. Your endodontist will give you specific recommendations after the surgery.
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