Risks of Keeping Wisdom Teeth: Infected Wisdom Tooth Removal Leads to Sepsis

Recently a case of a 25 year old woman from England who developed an infected wisdom tooth has been reported. The woman had the infected wisdom tooth removed in December 2018 after repeated infections had developed. Unfortunately the surgery was eventful and the woman developed complications.

Two days after the extraction the woman was not able to hold down any food nor any water. She was urged to go to a hospital by a doctor and spent four days at a hospital. While at the hospital she went into septic shock and was diagnosed with sepsis. She was given intravenous antibiotics and liquids. It was believed that when the wisdom tooth was removed the infection that was present went into her bloodstream. When she was released from the hospital the woman was given six different medications to take.

Roughly six months after the hospital stay the woman says she suffers from random headaches, experiences fatigue, and has bone aches. She has had confirmation recently from doctor that indicates she is clear of sepsis. The woman is speaking out to encourage others to have wisdom teeth removed before they become grossly infected such as the one that caused her sepsis. It would seem that an oral dosage of antibiotics should have been given to the woman before and/or after the wisdom tooth surgery but it is not reported if this occurred or not.

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The risks of keeping wisdom teeth is discussed over at http://www.teethremoval.com/risks_of_keeping_wisdom_teeth.html. While sepsis does not typically occur as a result of keeping wisdom teeth it has occurred before and has lead to death. Certainly being aware of risks that can result from keeping healthy impacted wisdom teeth can help patients decide how to approach their own wisdom teeth management choices. Sepsis is not the only serious issue that can develop as a result of wisdom teeth that can cause one to end up in a hospital for a prolonged stay. Other more serious health problems that can develop include Ludwig’s angina, descending necrotizing mediastinitis, cavernous sinus thrombosis, and necrotizing fasciitis. The more common and well known risks of keeping wisdom teeth include gum disease, cavities, cysts, tumors, and of course as in the case above infection.

The 25 year old woman as noted above is not the only person to experience an infected wisdom tooth lately. Some other people have done so recently as well from a quick check of Twitter as shown below:



  1. Alexandra Thompson, “Artist, 25, was left her ‘fighting for her life’ after a trip to the dentist to remove an infected wisdom tooth caused her to develop sepsis,” DailyMail, June 28, 2019, https://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-7191967/Artist-25-developed-sepsis-having-infected-wisdom-tooth-removed.html

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