Apicoectomy (also known as a root-end filling or root-end surgery) is a procedure that removes infections hidden deep in a tooth’s root. When root canals are no longer an option to save a tooth from infection, an apicoectomy can sometimes successfully save a tooth that would otherwise need to be removed.
Why would I need an apicoectomy?
Usually, an apicoectomy will only be performed after multiple root canals are unsuccessful. The special operating microscope used during an apicoectomy can help remove all signs of infection. The very tip of your tooth’s root can often cause recurring infections, which is why it is removed and replaced with a small filling during the procedure.
An apicoectomy is also useful for patients who need treatment on teeth that have a crown or bridge attached. Rather than entering the top of the tooth, like in a root canal, which would compromise the integrity of the crown, your oral surgeon will reach the root of your tooth through the side of the gums. This allows your previous dental work to stay intact.
How does the procedure work?
The procedure typically lasts 30–90 minutes. After applying a local anesthesia to prevent any pain, your oral surgeon will lift the gum and bone tissue to expose the root of your tooth. The infected tissue surrounding the tooth will be removed along with the very tip of the root. Then the surgeon will be able to examine and clean the tooth’s canal fully before sealing the root tip with a small filling.
Your oral surgeon will use a special microscope to look for cracks in the structure of the tooth. If the cracks are too severe, the tooth will have to be extracted. If the apicoectomy can continue, the oral surgeon will thoroughly clean the tooth using the surgical microscope and other ultrasonic tools. A filling will be placed to cover the tip of the root, and the surgical site will be sutured.
Dental Restorations in Alexandria, LA
If you have had multiple failed root canals, apicoectomy may be right for you. Our oral surgeons will do everything possible to save your natural tooth. Contact one of our offices in Alexandria, LA to learn more about your treatment options today.