Osteomyelitis after Wisdom Teeth Removal can Lead to Multiple Reconstructive Surgeries

Wisdom teeth removal is not without risks and complications such as osteomyelitits can occur. Osteomyelitits is an inflammation and infection of bone cortex and marrow that develops in the jaw. Some symptoms that can occur with osteomyelitits include high body temperature, increased pain, and neck swelling. In some cases emergency treatment is required to prevent death. In a case in 2012, a 24 year old man woman had an upper left and a lower right wisdom tooth extracted by an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. Five days after surgery the woman returned to the oral surgeon’s office where he discoveredmild swelling near the lower right wisdom tooth site, without pus, and a large amount of food debris. He irrigated the area, placed gel foam packing, and gave the woman a prescription for penicillin. Ten days after surgery the woman returned to … Read more

Using imaging to map arteries to reduce complications and improve outcomes in oral surgeries

When oral surgeons are working in the mouth they use the greater palatine artery as a landmark which is important for them to know to avoid damaging any surrounding nerves. There can be a discrepancy of where the surgeon thinks the palatine artery is and where it actually is by up to around 4 to 5 millimeters. This discrepancy is enough to lead to complications and injuries while the surgeon is working in the mouth area. One such complication that could occur is that the greater palatine artery is severed and significant bleeding occurs (hemorrhaging). The greater palatine nerve is also very close to the greater palatine artery and damaging this nerve can lead to potential permanent loss of feeling in parts of the mouth. As a result, oral surgeons tend to avoid any possible locations around where the greater … Read more

Does Keeping Wisdom Teeth Lead to More Lower Jaw Fractures?

An interesting article titled “Does an Association Exist Between the Presence of Lower Third Molar and Mandibular Angle Fractures?: A Meta-Analysis” written by Ruela et al. appears in the 2018 edition of the Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (vol. 76, pp. 34-45). The article seeks to explore if having wisdom teeth can lead to more lower jaw fractures and specifically mandibular angle fractures. In the article the authors argue how in the past some have argued for the prophylactic (preventative) removal of wisdom teeth to prevent mandibular angle fractures. This is because the mandibular angle occupies an area that should be filled with bone and by having teeth in this area it is susceptible to be 2 to 3 times or likely to fracture. To investigate this the authors performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to look at studies … Read more

Preventing Lingual Nerve Damage After Wisdom Teeth Extraction

An interesting article titled “Prevention of Lingual Nerve Injury in Third Molar Surgery: Literature Review” written by Pippi et al. appears in the 2017 edition of the Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (vol. 75, pp. 890-900). The article discusses attempting to identify any factors that could influence if a patient suffers lingual nerve damage after wisdom teeth removal. In the study the authors reviewed previous literature published up until February 2016 that pertained to lingual nerve injuries after wisdom teeth surgery. From the literature review the authors analyzed three different surgical techniques used for wisdom teeth removal: 1) buccal approach, 2) lingual split technique, and 3) buccal approach plus lingual flap retraction in order to determine if their were any differences on lingual nerve injuries. The authors also evaluated the association between nerve damage and tooth sectioning or ostectomy. … Read more

Using Cannabinoids After Wisdom Teeth Extraction

An interesting article titled “Postoperative Healing Assessment Using Cannabinoids in Oral Surgery” written by Puisys et al. appears in EC Dental Science (18.4, pp. 569-575, 2019). The article seeks to compare the healing after wisdom teeth extraction between using antibiotics or cannabinoids. Cannabinoids are chemical compounds that occur in the resin of the Cannabis sativa plant also known as marijuana.  In the study 60 patients had lower wisdom teeth extracted in Vilnius, Lithuania. The 60 patients were split into two groups with one group receiving the antibiotic amoxicillin (500 mg) three times daily for seven days and the other group receiving phytocannabinoids-cannabidiol in gel form for 7 days. All 60 patients went to the clinic daily for a week to record their satisfaction with the healing process and for the doctor to assess the healing. Specifically the patients answered a … Read more