What’s a Coronectomy?

A coronectomy is an alternative way to extract a tooth and is most commonly done in place of a wisdom tooth extraction. Instead of removing the entire tooth, coronectomy only removes the crown of the tooth and leaves the tooth’s roots intact in the jaw.

Why Get a Coronectomy Instead of Traditional Extraction?

Our Board-Certified Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon, Dr. Urbanek will usually recommend a coronectomy instead of extraction for a few reasons. For one, he will recommend a coronectomy if the crown of a tooth contains infection but the roots are still healthy. This commonly occurs with impacted wisdom teeth that have a partial eruption. The crown of the tooth will become infected but the roots stay healthy.

Dr. Urbanek also recommends coronectomy when long-standing impacted teeth are fused or tightly adhered to the bone. Extracting the tooth traditionally would be very traumatic and invasive. This strategy is important especially if the tooth is near the nerve in the lower jaw, sinus in the upper jaw, or near vital structures. If the root of the tooth is healthy, it’s completely safe to leave behind. However, when the root is infected, it helps loosen the bones nearby making it easier to remove.

To prevent the most damage and trauma to nearby tissue and nerves, Dr. Urbanek recommends coronectomy whenever possible. This less traumatic technique helps improve healing time and reduces procedure risks.

To determine if you’re a good candidate for a coronectomy instead of a traditional extraction, Dr. Urbanek will take a CT scan of the jaws and complete an oral exam. He will go over the pros and cons of each option during your consultation.

mature adult man smiling with teeth

Nerve Damage

One of the top reasons to get a coronectomy is to avoid nerve damage. Oftentimes, the roots of teeth might be close to a nerve, pressed on it, or even wrapped around it. These two nerves are the lingual nerve (LN) or inferior alveolar nerve (IAN) and they serve the purpose of delivering feeling to the tongue, chin, and lips.

If you get a traditional extraction and these nerves become damaged, it can result in:

  • Loss of taste
  • Difficulty chewing or speaking
  • Odd sensations or pain in the lower teeth, jaw, lip or chin

To help avoid these high risks, Dr. Urbanek will recommend a coronectomy when necessary. In some cases, the roots will need removal later in life, but they usually move away from the nerves by this point. This then reduces the risk of nerve damage.

Coronectomy Procedure Overview

Your coronectomy procedure will begin with your choice of sedation dentistry. At StarImage Dental Boutique & Oral Surgery, we want to make sure your procedure feels as comfortable as possible. Next, Dr. Urbanek will numb up your mouth and then carefully begin cutting the crown and removing it away in pieces. He will close the site with stitches and the procedure is over. Patients will follow similar aftercare instructions as wisdom tooth extraction.

Learn More About A Wisdom Tooth Extraction Alternative in Southlake

If you would like to find out if coronectomy in Southlake, TX is the best treatment option for you, please call us at (817) 587-4414 today to book a consultation.