What Is an Apicoectomy?
An apicoectomy is a surgical endodontic procedure to treat the root of the tooth. The root of the tooth must be accessed beneath the gum tissue. The tip of the root is removed along with any damaged tissue around it. A cap is placed over the tip of the root to prevent bacteria from entering the root canal. The root and the surrounding gum and bone tissue will then be able to heal.
Benefits of an Apicoectomy
An apicoectomy offers many benefits:
- Save the tooth. The biggest benefit of getting an apicoectomy is that it may save your tooth. When there is damaged tissue and infection at the base of the root, surgical treatment is sometimes the only option. By removing diseased tissue and repairing and sealing the root, the tooth may be fully restored.
- Prevent reinfection. An apicoectomy seals the tip of the root to prevent bacteria from getting inside the tooth and causing an infection.
- Treat the surrounding tissues. A tooth infection can often spread to the gum tissue, ligaments, and bone that support the tooth. An apicoectomy allows access to the underlying tissues in order to treat the infection.
- Relieve pain. Treating the infection will reduce the pain that you feel from inflammation and irritation.
Are You a Good Candidate for an Apicoectomy?
If you’ve had unsuccessful root canal therapy, you may be a good candidate for an apicoectomy. Getting under the gum tissue can uncover problems that may be the cause of the infection, allowing those areas to be treated and repaired to clear up the existing infection and prevent reinfection. A tooth that continues to cause pain after being treated with non-surgical procedures may need a more in-depth approach to provide a long term solution.