Apicoectomy (Endodontic microsurgery)

Why would I need Endodontic Surgery?

Generally, a root canal is all that is needed to save teeth with injured pulp from extraction. Occasionally, this non-surgical procedure will not be sufficient to heal the tooth and your endodontist will recommend surgery. Endodontic surgery can be used to locate fractures or hidden canals that do not appear on x-rays but still manifest pain in the tooth. Damaged root surfaces or the surrounding bone may also be treated with this procedure. The most common surgery used to save damaged teeth is an apicoectomy or root-end resection.

What is an Apicoectomy?

The video on the right illustrates this simple procedure. An incision is made in the gum tissue to expose the bone and surrounding inflamed tissue. The damaged tissue is removed along with the end of the root tip. A root-end filling is placed to prevent reinfection of the root and the gum is sutured. The bone naturally heals around the root over a period of months restoring full function.

An illustration showing infected tissue at the end of a tooth root
1. Infected Tissue
An illustration showing infected tissue being removed from the end of a tooth root
2. Tissue Removed
An illustration showing a suture placed after removing infected tissue from the end of a tooth root
3. Suture Placed
An illustration showing complete bone healing after removing infected tissue from the end of a tooth root
4. Healing Complete

Following the procedure, there may be some discomfort or slight swelling while the incision heals. This is normal for any surgical procedure. To alleviate any discomfort, an appropriate pain medication will be recommended. If you have pain that does not respond to medication, please call our office.

Endodontics of Westchester Shore

5 out of 5 stars based on 2 Apicoectomy reviews.

Patient Review

Dr. Cotter and his staff went above and beyond to help me. I had been to several other doctors over the course of months and was in constant pain. Dr. Cotter not only performed surgery that saved my front tooth, but continued to help me recover from complications caused by previous treatments. I highly recommend this group.

- Debra D

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review

I am so impressed with Dr. Cotter. He is very skilled in what he does. The microscope was amazing. I did not feel a thing after my surgery.

- Mark S

5 out of 5 stars on