Root canal retreatment is an alternative to extraction after root canal failure

Root canal therapy is a tooth-saving treatment that can help you avoid the extraction of a severely damaged tooth. While it is a successful procedure in most cases, there is a slight chance that the treatment will fail – either soon after the procedure or sometimes years later. While many dentists will suggest extraction at this point, the team of endodontic specialists at Beverly Hills Advanced Specialties of Dentistry in Beverly Hills, California, offers a better alternative: root canal retreatment.

What is root canal retreatment?

Root canal retreatment is very similar to the initial root canal procedure, except that it also involves steps to remove any dental restorations and filling material that was placed during the initial procedure. This is performed using an ultrasonic handpiece after the tooth is thoroughly numbed, and then very small instruments are used to sanitize and reshape the canals. We may use x-rays at this point to ensure that the roots have been thoroughly cleaned. The tooth is then packed with gutta-percha material to seal off the canals, and finally, a temporary crown is placed until your new permanent crown is ready.

Why root canal retreatment might be needed

Root canal therapy can unexpectedly fail for a variety of reasons, such as:

  • New decay or fracture in the treated tooth
  • Prolonged delay in placing a dental crown or other restoration after the initial procedure
  • A cracked dental crown or other issues that enable saliva and bacteria to enter the tooth
  • Complex, curved, or narrow canal structures that were not treated during the initial root canal procedure

Is retreatment better than an extraction?

The short answer is yes. In most cases, retreatment is a more time- and cost-effective option than extraction, in addition to being better for your overall oral health. The process of extracting and then replacing a tooth typically takes several visits and is quite expensive, and the result is unfortunately never quite the same as a natural tooth in terms of function and aesthetics. With endodontic retreatment, you can avoid these issues by retaining your natural tooth.

Learn more in a consultation

If you are experiencing tooth pain or other symptoms that a root canal-treated tooth is not healthy, it is important to schedule a consultation with your dentist as soon as possible. At Beverly Hills Advanced Specialties of Dentistry, we work closely with our patients to identify the source of their symptoms and provide effective treatment solutions, helping them avoid extractions whenever possible. We will also answer any questions you have about what to expect and the cost of your treatment. To schedule your consultation in our Beverly Hills, CA office, call (310) 861-3955 today!

The skilled doctors at our practice are Frank M. A. Vidjak, DDS, MSEd and Fanny Yacaman, DDS, MSEd, MS.

Doctors Bio Image - Dr.Frank Vidjak
Dr. Vidjak has been a prosthodontist for over two decades, with his private practice in Beverly Hills from 1989. A USC School of Dentistry graduate, he completed his specialty training in prosthodontics and an MS in Medical Education at USC where he also taught the School of Dentistry. He was its Clinical Director of the Advanced Prosthodontic Program and International Student Program too.

Doctors Bio Image - Dr. Fanny Yacaman
Dr. Yacaman received her DDS from the University Technologica of Mexico and served the clinical faculty in Endodontics at Unitec. She practiced Endodontics in Mexico City for over 10 years. She has an advanced specialty certificate in Advanced Microscopic Endodontics and Microsurgery and a Master of Science in Medical Education from the USC and has been a Clinical Faculty member at the UCLA School of Dentistry Department of Endodontics for more than 15 years. She specializes in Root Resorption treatment, having researched on External Root Resorption for over 15 years for a Master’s in Craniofacial Molecular Biology at USC’s Center for Craniofacial Molecular Biology. She is one of four Endodontists in United States that can treat Root Resorption. She is a local and international lecturer in Endodontics and Microsurgery and has received many awards and has published articles in the area.