Apicoectomy & Cavitations

What is a cavitation?

A cavitation is a hole in a bone. Dental cavitations are usually caused by improper healing from a root canal procedure or tooth extraction. Instead of the jawbone, or alveolar bone, growing to replace the void, the bone dies. This condition is called osteonecrosis, or bone death. Dental cavitations are potentially dangerous because they create a place for bacteria to collect and deteriorate surrounding bone structure. This kind of infection causes severe pain similar to pain from an infected tooth pulp. Sufferers of an infected cavitation may feel extreme sensitivity to bite, extreme temperatures, and mouth movements. Some patients experience swollen jaws and other facial pains. In some cases, infection can enter the bloodstream and cause other illnesses throughout the body. For your oral and overall health, an infected cavitation must be treated immediately.

What causes an infected cavitation?

  • A root canal treatment fails to remove infection
  • Small adjoining roots were infected from a previous internal infection
  • A root canal is blocked by a fractured file from a previous root canal treatment
  • Root canal treatment files cannot reach the root tip of curved or improperly shaped root canals

What is an apicoectomy?

An apicoectomy is a procedure to remove infection from a cavitation. The apex, or root tip which connects the tooth to the alveolar bone, is removed, and the void is filled to prevent further harmful infection and pain. Without an apiceoctomy, the infection will continue to deteriorate the jawbone and inflame the area, but generally cannot remove all the infection in the root.

How is an apicoectomy beneficial?

  • Alleviates pain from infection
  • Saves the tooth from extraction
  • Preserves the function of the tooth

How can Dr. Tuchman help me feel more comfortable during this procedure?

With local anesthesia, the area surrounding the cavitation will be numb to any pain. Most of our patients do not require more medication; however, for our apprehensive patients, we offer sedation treatments to help them relax.  For more information about these treatments, read our sedation dentistry page.

You can also have peace of mind about your procedure because our experienced staff members consistently provide gentle care and will make your comfort and safety their top priority.