Apicoectomy is the process through which the root tip and its surrounding infected issues of an infected tooth is removed. Generally, this procedure is done when inflammation or infection persists after a root canal treatment. This process is also known as endodontic microsurgery because the procedure is performed under an operating microscope. The other name for it also is Root-End Resection.
When is it necessary to have an apicoectomy?
If after a root canal treatment, a root canal again becomes infected, most of the time it happens because of a problem near the apex of the root. The dentist uses this procedure so that he can fix the problem so that the tooth does not need to be extracted out. This process is done only after at least one root canal procedure.
Some of the cases, it is possible that before an apicoectomy is done, a second root canal treatment is done. After so much of advancement in technology, it has become possible for the dentists that they can easily detect those canals, which were properly treated. This the time when a doing a second root canal procedure becomes the option instead of an apicoectomy.
This process must not be understood as being same to a root resection , where an entire root is removed instead of the tip.
Apicectomy Tooth (Oral surgery) Procedure
The surgeon cuts and the lifts the gum away from the tooth so that the root becomes accessible. The infected tissue is then removed along with the tip of the root. Here a dye is used to highlight the cracks and fractures in the tooth as if there is any such problem, then the tooth needs to be extracted and apicoectomy is not done.
In an apicoectomy, around 3 – 4 millimeters of the canal of the tooth is cleaned (done under a microscope using ultrasonic instruments) and then sealed. When the microscope is used, the chances of success are increased due to good visibility of the area. Then an X-ray of the area is taken before the tissue is put back.
The procedure generally takes between 30 to 90 minutes, but it depends on the location of the tooth and also the complexity of the structure of the root. The front teeth take less time in comparison to the lower molars that takes maximum time.
What are the follow-up procedures after an apicectomy?
The patient gets instructions about medications and eating/drinking. After 10-12 hours of the surgery, one needs to ice the area as there may be swelling and bruise and take relax for the rest of the day. Any pain or swelling on the second day can be controlled with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs available at the chemist or prescribed by the dentist.
Avoid brushing the area or vigorous, smoking, eating crunchy or hard foods. Do not try to examine the area on your own as it might prove to be harmful. The area might be numb for about a week after the surgery.
The stitches are removed in 2 to 7 days after the process, and the swelling generally goes in around 15 days. The recovery is speedy and easy in most of the cases.
Seeking help for Dental ailments after Root Canal Treatment
If even after a root canal treatment, you feel any pain or swelling in the particular tooth, you must call the dentist. He might then take X-rays and examine you. Only after this, the requirement of an apicoectomy is decided.
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FAQs for Apicoectomy Treatment
Ques: What is an Apicoectomy?
Ans: It is a surgical procedure to remove the upper part of the dental root and extreme process of granuloma. This procedure has been done when infection continues after root canal treatment. It is also known as Endodontic Microsurgery because doctors perform this procedure under an operating microscope. Another name for this procedure is Root-End Resection. As there are different surgical procedures performed to save a tooth, Apicoectomy or root-end resection is a very common procedure.
Ques: What are the reasons to undergo Apicoectomy?
Ans: There are many reasons to undergo Apicoectomy, such as blocked root canals, small root branches, and curved root canals.
- Blocked root canal – In a few cases, the dentist is not able to clean the root canal because it is blocked. The infection can easily affect other teeth.
- Small touching root branches – Teeth roots are very complex and have many small branches. If those small branches have not been cleaned and sealed properly then the roots of the teeth get infected.
- Curved root canals – If the root canal is in a curved shape, the doctor will not be able to reach the root tip after the root canal and due to this infection develops.
Ques: What to expect after an Apicoectomy?
Ans: After the procedure, the patient will experience discomfort and minor swelling till the incision heals. To reduce discomfort, the doctor will prescribe pain medication and for swelling ice packs will help. The discomfort and pain are expected to last for 4-5 days. After taking medicines, the patient still feels any problem so it is advisable to contact the doctor.
Ques: What will happen during the Apicoectomy procedure?
Ans: Before starting the procedure, the doctor will give local anesthesia which will make the patient comfortable. After this, a very small incision is made to open the gum tissue near the tooth to remove infected tissues. Then, the doctor will remove the tip of the tooth’s root, and the root canal end will be sealed with a small filling. The doctor will close the gum tissues and the bone will heal in 2 to 3 months.
Ques: How long does it take to recover from an Apicoectomy?
Ans: The doctor will remove stitches 2 to7 days after the procedure. Generally, patients can come back to their normal activities from the next day of the Apicoectomy. Patients should follow instructions given by the doctor for diet and brushing because these will help you in fast recovery. The patient can also experience some discomfort and swelling which can be reduced by medicines. For any severe problems kindly contact your doctor on an immediate basis.
Ques: What are the risks involved with the Apicoectomy procedure?
Ans: There is no major risk involved with Apicoectomy. However, the only risk is if it fails then the dentist has to remove the tooth to save it from infection. Although, all the things have been taken care of by the doctor.
Ques: Can a patient drive after the procedure?
Ans: Yes, the patient can drive immediately after the procedure. However, it is better to go with an attendant or make transport arrangements as the effect of anesthesia takes time to wear off.
Ques: What is another alternative for Apicoectomy surgery?
Ans: The only alternative to Apicoectomy is the extraction of the tooth. After extraction, space needs to be filled with implants and bridges. The patient can also use removable partial dentures for chewing and to prevent neighbor teeth from shifting. An apicoectomy procedure is very cost-effective and healthy for the natural teeth due to which doctors always recommend endodontic surgery in the starting.
Ques: How much time it will take to complete the Apicoectomy procedure?
Ans: It totally depends on the position of teeth and the structure of the tooth. Generally, it takes approximately 1 hour to complete the procedure.
Ques: When will be the follow up after this procedure?
Ans: Generally, swelling and pain will go after 3 to 4 days after the procedure. If in case the patient is facing extensive pain and any other problem then it is advisable to visit the doctor.
Ques: When to start with solid food after the procedure?
Ans: For the few days after the procedure the patient should drink lots of fluids. They should avoid hot liquids and foods. On the day of the surgery, eat soft food and cold liquid. Also, avoid solid foods for 8 to10 days until it starts feeling normal.
Ques: How long does it take to get back to the work after this procedure?
Ans: It is advisable to take a rest on the same day of the surgery. Most of the patients go back to their work on the next day of the Apicoectomy.
Ques: What should be avoided by a patient before an Apicoectomy procedure?
Ans: The patient should avoid smoking for 2-3 weeks before the surgery and should not start again till the teeth completely healed. It is also important to quit tobacco as it can easily cause dental problems. Also avoid hard, crunchy, and sticky foods. The doctor will also give a precaution list before the surgery.
What is the approximate cost for Apicoectomy Treatment and how I can get an appointment?
Ans: To know about the treatment cost and appointment, kindly contact on below details:
- Email: [email protected]
- Mobile/Whatsapp: +91 9717766080