• Apicoectomy is used to treat teeth that have not responded to root canal treatment
• It aims to save sensitive or deep decayed teeth
Who is this procedure for?
• People who have damaged root surfaces or surrounding bone;
• People who have fractures or hidden root canals that do not appear on X – rays;
• People who have had unsuccessful root canal treatment.
Who should not consider this procedure?
• If the tooth to be treated is close to the sinus apicoectomy cannot be performed.
What happens before the procedure?
At the initial consultation the dentist asks patients if they have high blood pressure or problems with epinephrine in local anesthetics, as the anesthetic that is used during the apicoectomy has twice as much epinephrine as the ones that are used with other dental procedures. Epinephrine will cause an increase in your heart rate, so the dentist needs to know this information. Before the actual procedure the patient is anesthetized; the dentist may choose to use medicine to help the patient relax.
What happens during the procedure?
Apicoectomy takes between 30 and 90 minutes and begins with the lifting of the gum. This uncovers the bone and the tooth root end. The root end is resected together with the surrounding infected tissue. The dentist then uses root end filling to seal the end of the root canal. An X – ray of the area is taken before the tissue is sutured. Next, the gum is repositioned and the dentist uses dissolvable stitches to hold it back in its place until it heals.
What happens after the procedure?
The area is usually bruised and swollen for about a day, so patients are advised to rest during that time. In some cases the swelling may get worse the second day; all soreness and swelling disappear within two weeks. The bone around the root end heals in a few months.