In most cases, a non-surgical root canal is all that’s needed to prevent the extraction of an infected tooth. However, there are circumstances where this time-tested technique is not sufficient enough to fully heal the overall structure, and infection and discomfort may continue to occur. That’s where a highly trained and capable endodontist like Dr. Gell and Dr. Watts come in. An apicoectomy (also known as endodontic microsurgery) can be performed, which involves the removal of the tip of the root (also known as the apex) in order to prevent further harm. If you have any questions about this specialty service or would like to schedule a consultation here in Concord, NC, don’t hesitate to contact our office. We are happy to accommodate both individual patients and referrals from general dentists!
Dr. Gell and Dr. Watts will likely recommend this type of treatment if we discover the following concerns after an initial root canal:
Before performing any actual treatment, we will take the time to understand your full dental history, medical history, and any current medication you’re taking so that we can ensure your safety. During the apicoectomy itself, a minor incision will be created in the gum margin, and our team will carefully approach the tooth from either the side or the bottom. Using a state-of-the-art microscope, we will thoroughly eliminate all of the infected structure. The apex is then removed and sealed with biocompatible filling material to prevent the risk of further infection. The final step is to suture the gum margin.
While most patients should be able to return to their regular routine very quickly, keep in mind that the treatment site may not fully heal until two weeks have passed. Additionally, the jawbone will take several months to gradually grow around the tooth again. Common post-operative symptoms include slight oral swelling and some general discomfort – this can be properly managed with painkillers.
Our team will provide detailed instructions regarding how to best manage your treated teeth and ensure a successful recovery, including the types of foods to eat and how to brush and floss. We may also prescribe antibiotics if the apicoectomy was performed on an upper molar because sinus infections are more likely to occur in this instance.