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Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery in Beaufort, South Carolina
Oral Pathology, Pre prosthetic Surgery & Apicoectomy
Oral Pathology
What is Oral Pathology?
Oral pathology is the specialty which deals with the identification, nature, and management, of oral diseases.
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What are Signs of Oral and Maxillofacial Diseases?
Your gums should normally look smooth and coral pink in color. If you notice a change in this appearance, it could be an early development of a pathological process.
The most serious pathological disease is oral cancer. Here are some signs that could indicate the beginning of a pathologic process or cancer:
White and Red patches in the mouth (see Figure 1)
Sore(s) that bleed easily or fails to heal
Thickening or a lump on your gums inside your mouth
Difficulty swallowing or chewing
Constant sore throat or rasping
White patches  (leukoplakia)and Red patches(erythroplasia)
You can notice these changes on your cheeks, lips, face, neck, tongue, palate, and gum tissue around your teeth. You may not experience pain with these signs.
Should I Check for Oral Pathologies?
You should check your mouth monthly and look for changes like the ones listed above. You should never ignore suspicious sores or lumps. Contact Dr. Hane immediately if you notice any changes whatsoever.
Pre-Prosthetic Surgery
What is Pre-prosthetic Surgery?
Pre-prosthetic Surgery is an oral and maxillofacial procedure to prepare your mouth before Dr. Hane places a prosthesis (complete or partial dentures). Your denture will sit on the bone ridge. In order to ensure the denture fits well in your mouth and feels comfortable, the bone and tissue area must be the appropriate shape and size. When a tooth is extracted, the area beneath the extracted tooth may be left uneven or jagged. This bone may need to be reshaped or leveled. Sometimes, the bone may need to be removed.
What are Pre-prosthetic Procedures?
The following oral surgery procedures may need to be completed by Dr. Hane in order for your denture to fit well within your mouth:
Removal of excess bone (see Figures 1 & 2)
Removal of excess gum tissues
Bone ridge reduction
Bone leveling and reshaping
Dr. Hane will determine the appropriate procedure during your evaluation.
Will I be Asleep during the Procedure?
You have several anesthetic options when receiving pre-prosthetic surgery.
Local anesthesia
General anesthesia (where you are put to sleep)
Conscious intravenous sedation
Nitrous Oxide Gas (laughing gas)
Oral Sedation (“happy pills”)
Dr. Hane will discuss with you the various anesthetic options during your evaluation.
Bone Irregular from Tooth Loss
Bone Irregular from Tooth Loss
Irregular Bone Removed
Irregular Bone Removed
What is a Root?
Roots hold your teeth in place and extend them into your jawbone. Your front teeth usually have a single root whereas other teeth like your molars and premolars have two or more roots. Nerve and blood vessels enter your tooth through the tip of the root, known as the apex. The nerves and blood vessels travel through your root via a canal, and into the pulp chamber, which is inside the crown (the visible part of your tooth).
Why Do I Need an Apicoectomy?
When you receive root canal treatment, the canals are cleaned and all tissue that is inflamed or infected is removed. When the inflammation or infection won’t go away or develops after a root canal, an apicoectomy may be necessary (see Figure 1).
What is an Apicoectomy?
The canal in your root is very complex and has many small branches extending from it. After a root canal, sometimes infected debris can linger in these branches. This debris can prevent healing or cause re-infection. During an apicoectomy, the apex or the root tip is removed along with all infected tissue. A filling is then placed at the end of the root to seal it.
An apicoectomy is only performed after the tooth has had at least one root canal procedure and cannot be retreated or was not successful in retreatment.
Retreatment is not possible when the tooth has a crown or is part of a bridge. Retreatment of the root canal requires cutting through the crown or bridge which may destroy or weaken the prosthesis. An apicoectomy would be the proper solution in this situation.
What Does an Apicoectomy Involve?
Dr. Hane will cut and lift your gum away from the tooth. All infected tissue is removed as well as the last few millimeters of the root tip (see Figure 2). The tooth’s canal will then be cleaned and sealed by using a special microscope and ultrasonic instruments (see Figure 3). By using these tools Dr. Hane will have an increased chance of clearing the area entirely.
Infected Tissue and Toot Tip Removed Canal is Sealed
Infected Tissue and Toot Tip Removed Canal is Sealed
Apicoectomies usually take 30 to 90 minutes. The length of the procedure is dependent upon the location of the tooth and the root structure’s complexity. Front teeth are usually the shortest and molars generally take the longest.
What Does Recovery Involve?
Dr. Hane will instruct you on what medicines to take and what you can eat or drink. Ice should be applied to the area 10 – 12 hours after surgery.
The area may swell and bruise, and may be more swollen the second day following the procedure. Pain can be controlled with ibuprofen (Advil, Mortin, etc.). Avoid brushing the area to allow for healing. You should not eat hard or crunchy foods, or smoke. Make sure you do not lift your lip to inspect the area because it can loosen the stitches and disrupt the formation of a blood clot which is necessary for healing.
All soreness and swelling are gone within 14 days. Stitches will be removed between two and seven days following your procedure. Many people say that recovery from an apicoectomy is easier than the original root canal treatment.
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