What Is Apical Surgery?
Apical surgery, or apicoectomy, is a minor surgical procedure performed by an endodontist to remove the infected tip of a tooth root (the apex) and seal the root canal. This is usually recommended when a conventional root canal treatment or retreatment cannot fully eliminate infection, or when access to the root is complicated due to dental restorations such as crowns or bridges.
The Apical Surgery Process
The apical surgery process involves several steps:
- Local anesthesia: To ensure you’re comfortable during the procedure, we administer local anesthesia to numb the area.
- Accessing the root: A small incision is made in the gum tissue to expose the bone and the root end of the tooth.
- Removal of infected tissue: The root end and the surrounding infected tissue are then removed.
- Sealing the canal: The end of the root canal is sealed with a small filling to prevent future infections.
- Closure: The gum is sutured back into place to allow healing.
Apical surgery typically requires three appointments. The first will be for the consultation to review the procedure and to answer any questions or concerns patients might have. The second appointment will be for the surgery and the third will be for suture removal and follow up.
Reasons For Apical Surgery
Apical surgery is usually recommended when conventional root canal treatment or retreatment isn’t successful in eliminating an infection, or when these treatments aren’t possible due to complex root structures or dental restorations. By removing the very end of the root, apical surgery helps to eliminate persistent infection, alleviating discomfort and preserving the natural tooth.
Recovery Following Apical Surgery
After apical surgery, you may experience some swelling or discomfort for a few days, which can be managed effectively with over-the-counter discomfort relief medication. It’s also important to maintain good oral hygiene, but avoid vigorous brushing around the surgical site. Our team will provide comprehensive aftercare instructions to aid your recovery and monitor your progress with follow-up appointments. If you have any questions or concerns, reach out to us!