An overview of endodontic surgery

Why would I need Endodontic Surgery?

Generally, a root canal is all that is needed to save teeth with injured pulp from extraction. Occasionally, this non-surgical procedure will not be sufficient to heal the tooth and your Dr. LeValleyDr. Bergo, and Dr. Geraets will recommend surgery. Endodontic surgery can be used to locate fractures or hidden canals that do not appear on x-rays but still manifest pain in the tooth. Damaged root surfaces or the surrounding bone may also be treated with this procedure. The most common surgery used to save damaged teeth is an apicoectomy or root-end resection.

What is an Apicoectomy?

The diagram to the left illustrates this simple procedure. An incision is made in the gum tissue to expose the bone and surrounding inflamed tissue. The damaged tissue is removed along with the end of the root tip. A root-end filling is placed to prevent reinfection of the root and the gum is sutured. The bone naturally heals around the root over a period of months restoring full function.

Following the procedure, there may be some discomfort or slight swelling while the incision heals. This is normal for any surgical procedure. To alleviate any discomfort, an appropriate pain medication will be recommended. If you have pain that does not respond to medication, please call our office.

Northern Colorado Endodontics

5 out of 5 stars based on 2 Apicoectomy reviews.

Superb practice in terms of both medical expertise and staff professionalism. Several years ago I had a root canal to treat a lesion in one of my teeth, which mostly kept the problem at bay but never conclusively "cured" it. Recently it had begun to act up again and also developed an infection and needed to be re-treated, and my dentist referred me to NCE. At the time my insurance did not cover them, but I called their office frequently to try to determine whether or not it was worth upgrading my dental plan so that I could see them. Their staff was always incredibly kind, attentive, and genuinely helped me figure things out (I cannot say the same of the staff at any other office I called). In the meantime I saw several other dental care providers - including another endodontist - all of whom suggested either procedures that were not likely to be effective long-term, or extracting the tooth altogether. This seemed far too drastic to me, as the tooth and surrounding area were not at all swollen or painful. When I finally saw Dr. Troxel at NCE, he easily identified a technique that would treat the infection and advancing lesion, as well as extend the life of the natural tooth. The surgery was quick and painless, and he and his assistant were efficient and communicative throughout. Afterwards I had very minimal pain and swelling, and no post-operative bleeding. I'd had several oral surgeries of varying intensity in the past, and have always had moderate swelling and bleeding in the first few days following the procedure. The fact that I didn't experience any of that after my procedure at NCE is, I think, a sign of a skilled surgeon. I highly recommend Dr. Troxel and NCE; don't waste your time and money anywhere else.

- Margaret H

5 out of 5 stars on

Exceptional care! From the moment I walked through the doors my appointment went very well. Dr. LeValley & his assistant Amanda took great care of me. I highly recommend this office!

- Josey G

5 out of 5 stars on