If a root canal treatment fails to improve the inflammation or infection of your tooth, we may recommend a procedure called an apicoectomy. This treatment involves the removal of the tip of your infected tooth root, followed by filling and sealing the root to prevent further infection. With an apicoectomy we aim to preserve the function of your tooth and save it from needing to be extracted.
An apicoectomy can help save a re-infected tooth from extraction, as it is always best to try to maintain your natural teeth for as long as possible. It is usually cheaper to have an apicoectomy than to be faced with replacing a lost tooth, and the incision in your gum is tiny as only the very tip of the root needs to be accessed.
You may experience slight facial swelling and some discomfort after the procedure, and there is a small possibility treatment will not be successful. The infected tooth could be close to major nerves or sinuses, depending on its location, and there is a tiny risk of damage. This is why Painfree Dentistry Paramatta uses panoramic x-rays to plan surgery, as this minimises these risks.
We begin the procedure by taking panoramic x-rays, which allow us to plan the apicoectomy in great detail. Under local anaesthesia, the dentist makes a tiny incision in your gum, exposing the root by lifting away the gum and in some cases, a tiny fraction of your jawbone. The edge of the root tip and any other infected tissue are removed with ultrasonic instruments, before your tooth is sealed with a filling material and your gum is sutured.
After several days, we would ask you to return to Painfree Dentistry to allow your dentist to remove the stitches. You will fully heal over the next few months after your apicoectomy. If you experience any pain or swelling around the area, please contact Painfree Dentistry immediately to allow us to determine the cause.