An apicoectomy is the removal of a tooth root tip or apex.
Everything you need to know about endodontic surgery
An apicoectomy (also called an apicectomy) is the removal of the infected root tip and surrounding diseased tissue followed by sealing the exposed root with a special filling material.
If an infection develops or persists after a root canal has been done, it’s often because of a problem near the apex of the root where there are often extra fine branches of the main canal. Sometimes, even after root canal treatment, infected debris can remain in these branches and possibly prevent healing or cause re-infection later.
In such cases, a better alternative is to treat infection from the root end of the tooth (instead of the crown end), and includes the removal of diseased tissue from around the tip of the root, and sealing the root tip.
Endodontists use state-of-the-art technology such as fiber optic lights, operating microscopes, and ultrasonic instruments that give them a very accurate view of the tooth, making the treatment quick, comfortable and successful.
What is involved with endodontic surgery
The surgery involves a precise incision into the gum tissue, which is then gently lifted to expose the bone and surrounding area.
The diseased or infected tissue is then carefully removed, along with the tip of the root. A root-end filling, made from a special biocompatible material, seals the tip of the root to prevent further infection.
The gum is then sutured back into place. The bone around the root will naturally heal over a period of months, restoring to full functionality.
After the surgery, there may be some discomfort or inflammation as the patient heals.
This is part of the natural healing process, and many patients are able to continue to normal activities the next day.
An appropriate pain medication will be recommended to alleviate any discomfort.
Make sure to follow postoperative instructions – including diet and brushing advice, if you do not respond well to medication or recovery instructions, please contact our office.
An apicoectomy is usually a permanent solution, and should last for the life of the tooth, returning the tooth, bone and gum tissues to health for many years.
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