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Neil L. Starr, DDS, PC

What is a Root Resection and When Would Someone Need One?


Posted on 3/10/2020 by Neil Starr DDS PC
What is a Root Resection and When Would Someone Need One?Under certain circumstances, a root canal may not be the dental procedure that can save a tooth. Sometimes, the shape of a person's tooth roots may make it difficult for us to reach the ends of them for a root canal, making a root resection the next viable option for treatment.

Aside from the curvature of your roots, we may recommend a root resection, or apicoectomy, when calcium deposits are thick enough to prevent us from reaching the tips of your tooth's root. This procedure involves an incision in your gum, in order to expose the infected root. Then, the infected tissue is flushed out, and a portion of your root is removed. In some cases, we may use a small filling to protect the root tip and stitches to seal the wound.

When to Use a Root Resection

Although root canals have a high rate of success, they can fail in some instances, such as when the infection is not completely removed from the root, and someone may not develop symptoms for years after a faulty root canal.

Our goal in any situation is to save your natural teeth whenever possible, and sometimes a root resection is necessary to accomplish that. Whether you are experiencing tooth pain from the same tooth that was treated years ago, or you are experiencing discomfort or pain near the root of your tooth, a root resection may be the appropriate treatment for you.

Other Conditions Requiring a Root Resection

In addition to the situations above when a root resection is necessary, other factors that may require a root resection include a crack or fracture in the tooth roots, blocked root canal due to a fractured, small branches at the sides of the root canal, severe pain after a root canal procedure, and any factors that inhibit healing.

To learn more about a root resection for tooth pain near your roots, please contact our office for a consultation. We will do everything possible to keep your natural smile.


Neil L. Starr, DDS, PC

Washington Office

1234 19th Street N.W. #306
Washington, DC 20036

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