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  • #1427
    JGC
    15 Posts

    Has anyone had this done? My dentist who is a Maxillofacial Surgeon has suggested I have this on my upper canine tooth which has previously been root filled and has a low grade infection, rather than taking it out and having an implant. He says I will feel pretty bruised and swollen for a few days afterwards. Any experience, good or bad? I’m not worried about having it done as such, more how I will feel afterwards and how long it takes to heal.

  • #1428
    Clare
    9 Posts

    I’ve had it done twice to one of my front teeth as there was a small pocket of infection left after the first time, so after a couple of years, I had to have it redone. I had it done at our nearby Dental Teaching Hospital – so for all my appointments, there were 6-8 students in attendance.

    I don’t want to bend the truth here, it was very uncomfortable and fairly unpleasant, but for me, it was worth a try rather than go down the implant route – and I am really pleased I did have it done, so would recommend it to others.

    I wasn’t offered any sedation so just had about 10 or so local anaesthetic injections in the roof of my mouth to start with, then the surgeon (it was done in a dental surgical theatre) cut through the gum above my tooth, and then dug out the infected bone (accumulated over 20 yrs!) and replaced it with dental cement. On the first time I had it done, it was at this point that one of the dental students fainted and had to be carried out!

    Unfortunately, on both occasions, my local anesthetic started to wear off towards the end of the procedure and despite promises from the surgeon that he’d top-up if necessary, this didn’t happen. The second time, I actually broke the headrest off the chair as I was pushing so hard against it!

    I would recommend being very upfront with them to say you will let them know that you will let them know if you need a top-up!

    For me, the stitching was effectively done without much/any anesthetic, but he did a good job getting it all stitched and the stitches were left in for a week or so before returning to the hospital to have them removed. I had four or five days off work both time as I felt/looked like I’d done 10 rounds with Mike Tyson!

    They gave me a bottle of Corsodyl and to be honest you don’t feel like eating for a day or so just keep fluids up – and overlap the Co-codomol / Nurofen so you don’t give the painkillers a chance to wear off.

    Having said all that, I’d still hand on heart recommend it – it’s definitely worth the discomfort. Good luck with yours Op!

    • #1430
      JGC
      15 Posts

      Thank you so much for your insightful reply, it’s really helpful to get an idea of what it’s all about! It sounds pretty horrific but its good to know that its worth it in the long run. My surgeon is hoping to avoid an implant and has an above average success rate, so fingers crossed. I’ll be sure to fully discuss the anesthetic beforehand!

      I’ve been warned that I’ll look and feel pretty awful for a few days afterward and I think that’s what’s worrying me more than anything. I’m not looking forward to it at all especially as at the moment the tooth isn’t playing up, but I’ve been putting it off the about 18 months and really need to get it done rather than worrying about it! I’m booked in for 17th August but will try not to give it too much thought until the day before. At least I know what to expect now rather that imagining all sorts of horrors!

    • #1445
      Clare
      9 Posts

      I hope your Op goes well and that you recover quickly!

      Ref implants, as I’d had a long standing infection in the bone followed by two Apicoectomy Ops, the Consultant Maxiofacial Surgeon, wasn’t convinced that an implant would take well enough.

      Also they aren’t available on the NHS, which I don’t have a problem with, but when I started to look at the options it seemed to be a very commercial industry. A colleague chose based on price and ended up having to have bone grafts etc.

      Anyway, all the best!

    • #1446
      JGC
      15 Posts

      My Maxillofacial Surgeon has also said that at the moment unfortunately because of the bone loss due to infection an implant may not hold. He has said that by doing the apicoectomy and clearing the infection bone will infill the space that the infection has caused and then if I wanted an implant in the future it would have more chance of success.
      Unfortunately, this whole procedure is being done privately, I’ve not even asked how much it’ll cost yet! My husband has had a couple of implants and is very happy with them and is in the process of having a couple more. Fingers crossed the apicoectomy will be successful, but whatever happens, I can’t stay as I am. This isn’t going to go away without intervention sadly.

    • #1447
      Clare
      9 Posts

      Just a thought but is there no way you could be referred to a teaching dental hospital to have it done on the NHS? The dentist I go to is private as its the only one in the village and I pay via Denplan. However, she can refer to the Dental Hospital (Newcastle) which is fabulous with amazing facilities.

      I’ve also had two impacted wisdom teeth removed under IV sedation there over the last few years. In fact, my consultant said I’d qualify for getting an invite to their Christmas party as I’ve spent quite a lot of time there!

      I think they need some of the more complicated cases to use to teach – hence all the students watching but that just forces you to put your brave pants on – haha! It’s only the pre-op checks and the check-ups after the ops that are done by the students but the consultant then comes along and they have a chat about their findings and recommendations. The actual surgery is done by a top teaching maxillofacial dental surgeon.

      Tbh I’m very happy with the arrangement as its important that the students get to have a close look at the procedure (even if they do faint occasionally!) because there’s only so much they can learn from textbooks. I asked the Surgeon how many they have of the more complicated Api’s a year and it was actually very few.

      Anyway, whichever way you have it done (private/NHS) I’m sure it will go very well – it sounds like you’ve got a very good consultant. Even when I knew what to expect it didn’t put me off having it done again because it was so worth getting it sorted! I’d had this low-grade infection over 20 or so years and it was never going to get better with antibiotics.

      Btw on the day, my OH collected me – and he brought an ice pack with him in a cool bag that was wrapped in a tea towel so I was able to ice the area on the way home and it made a huge difference to the amount of swelling compared to the first time – and keep icing it when you get home.

      I’d suggest getting home and just taking to your bed if that’s possible, to get some good rest for a day or so without having to get too much done – so as to give it a good chance to settle down and heal.

      Ps. Sorry for the ramble!

    • #1448
      JGC
      15 Posts

      Unfortunately, my nearest dental hospital is an hour and a half away and I think to be honest if I don’t go with this surgeon I might chicken out. I have been told previously my an endodontist that an apicoectomy wasn’t possible as the root is short so I was really surprised when this surgeon suggested it as an option. It’s his particular specialty so I think he’ll give me the best chance.
      I was wondering about driving myself and I think I’ll get my OH to take me so that I can apply ice packs straight away. I think I’m more worried about the aftermath than the procedure.
      Can I just say it is so helpful to read your personal experience, there are some really horrible stories on google (I know I shouldn’t!), as well as the good of course so to have the facts from someone who knows is good. Thank you.

  • #1429
    ayme
    6 Posts

    I was referred to the dental hospital for this, but after 5 hours :O :O :O of drilling over three visits the wonderful dentist there managed to completely clear the root of its infection, and I avoided the apicectomy.

  • #1530
    JGC
    15 Posts

    Well it’s all done and I can honestly say I didn’t feel a thing and have minimal swelling and bruising, so if anyone ever searches this thread in the future I’d say go for it, but choose your surgeon carefully

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