There are many situations in which endodontic surgery can save your teeth. Choosing endodontic surgery could lead to a healthy, functioning, natural tooth for the rest of your life.
When symptoms persist and no problems are evident on the X-ray, surgery may be used as a diagnostic tool. A surgical procedure allows your endodontist in Louisville to examine the entire root of the tooth, diagnose the problem, and provide treatment.
Calcium deposits may narrow a canal too much for the instruments used in nonsurgical root canal treatments to reach the end of the root. In some cases, your endodontist may perform endodontic surgery to clean and seal the remainder of the canal.
It is generally the case that a tooth that has undergone a root canal can last for the remainder of your life without requiring further endodontic treatment. Occasionally, however, a tooth may fail to heal or may become infected. Even after successful treatment, a tooth may become painful or diseased months or even years later. In this case, surgery may be able to save the tooth. In addition, surgery may be necessary to repair damaged root surfaces or the surrounding bone.
Apicoectomy (Root-End Resection)
Even though there are many surgical procedures to save a tooth, the most common one is called an apicoectomy, or root-end resection. If inflammation or infection persists around the end of your tooth after a root canal procedure, your endodontist may have to perform an apicoectomy.
During this procedure, the endodontist opens the gum tissue near the tooth to inspect the underlying bone and remove inflamed or infected tissue. It is also necessary to remove the very end of the root. The end of the root canal may be sealed with a filling, and a few stitches or sutures are placed in the gum tissue to allow it to heal properly. Over the course of several months, the bone heals around the end of the root.
In certain instances, it is possible to perform an operation called “intentional replantation.” Extraction of the tooth is followed by an endodontic procedure while the tooth is out of the mouth, and then the tooth is placed back into the socket.
Among the other procedures that endodontists might perform are dividing a tooth in half, repairing an injured root, or even removing a root. You can discuss the type of surgery your tooth requires with your endodontist.
Endodontic surgery alternatives
The only alternative to surgery is often extraction of the tooth. In order to restore chewing function and prevent adjacent teeth from shifting, the extracted tooth must then be replaced with a dental implant, bridge, or removable partial denture. No matter how effective modern artificial tooth replacements are, nothing beats your natural teeth. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please contact our Louisville, KY endodontics office.