We know you probably don’t know what this term means off the top of your head here at NYC Endodontics, and we won’t hold that against you. But we would like to give you some information on this procedure because we believe it will help educate our patients and promote better oral health. Knowledge is power, after all.
An apicoectomy is a procedure needed when an infection persists or develops after you have a root canal procedure or retreatment. On a basic level, your teeth are held in place by roots that reach up into your jawbone. There could be anywhere for one to four roots. The apex of these roots are where nerves and blood vessels enter the actual tooth. These nerves and blood vessels travel through a canal inside of the roots of your teeth and into what is called a pulp chamber, which is located inside of the crown of your tooth.
During a standard root canal treatment that you might get at NYC Endodontics, we would clean these canals and remove any infected tissue that we find. However, since there are several branches off your main canals, sometimes even a great endodontics specialist can overlook infected tissue that remains in the branches. Infected tissue can cause further problems, possibly prevent healing, and even cause re-infection.
What is the apicoectomy procedure?
In an apicoectomy, the apex of your tooth (also referred to as the root tip) is removed along with the infected tissue. After this, a filling is put in to seal the end of the root tip and stitches are applied to the gums to promote tissue healing. After a month or so, the bone heals around the end of the root.
This procedure is generally safe and effective. Apicoectomies are rare occurrences. But they are done in an effort to help people preserve their real teeth as long as humanly possible. It sounds like a drudgery, but this procedure is generally permanent and actually quite cost-effective. The end result, when the procedure is performed correctly, will help you in preserving your natural teeth for the rest of your life.
We’re always happy to answer any questions at NYC Endodontics. If you’re experiencing pain beyond what’s inclusive with the root canal procedure, then give us a call today and we’ll decide the best course of action.