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Molly Maloof, MD

Director of Clinical Content

Broken tooth on my lower moral.

Hi, im 26. And my dentist just extracted my lower extra molar. Its beside my K9 tooth. It was too hard and maybe too deep. We did not process any xray since she told me that it can be extracted. During the extraction my tooth got broken. She tried to drill some or maybe theroot left but she said its too deep. She told me that its ok just drink med ( antibiotec etc.) Is it safe? Since theres still a broken tooth left? It was a healthy tooth but its annoying so I planned to extract it. is it safe?
  • Male | 26 years old
  • Complaint duration: 1 day

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Featured Answer

1 UpVoted this answer
You need to see an oral surgeon since you only have part of your tooth extracted. Leaving the broken fragment behind may result in an abscess and cause problems for the adjacent teeth
James A. Vito
1 UpVoted this answer
Hi it depends on the clinical situation . If the tooth was not previously infected and it was close to vital structures (nerves, sinus) then sometimes a clinical judgment is made to leave root fragments.
1 UpVoted this answer
It may or may not have a problem. You should get a second opinion and have the situation monitored carefully.
Lawrence D. Singer
1 UpVoted this answer
Your dentist's choices (as you describe) concern me. perhaps your memory of the event is different than what happened (I hope). Anytime a tooth is extracted, there should be supporting radiographic films taken that evaluate your risks of proximate anatomic structures, in this case the inferior alveolar nerve (IAN). for a premolar (which is the tooth beside the 'k9' you describe), there is little risk of IAN injury but you never know. It's standard protocol to take a film before any extraction for most dentists in america.

During an extraction a tooth can certainly break. If your dentist chose to leave a root tip in your jaw after extended effort to remove it / drill it out, that too is a concern. Without a radiograph you don't know how big that final fragment is. might be minor, might be an issue. only an xray can tell you the reality. it would be risky to 'chase' a root tip as your surgeon doesn't know where the root tip is relative to other anatomy such as the IAN nerve if you didn't have an xray.

concerning what to do now: consult with another dentist or an oral surgeon and assess your risks moving forward. Might be nothing, might be important to get that final piece out.
1 UpVoted this answer
You should have the remaining tooth extracted instead of leaving the remaining roots in the socket. Perhaps a referral to a qualified dentist who does surgical extractions would be most helpful.
1 UpVoted this answer
Have it evaluated by an oral surgeon if you have any questions. You get answers and if it needs to be removed they remove teeth all day every day.
1 UpVoted this answer
The situation with a root tip in your bone and a broken molar is alarming. You will be needing proper xray for diagnosis, seek a dentist surgeon , and a restorative dentist, for the existing problem, before jeopardizing your oral health.After proper diagnosis you can go over the necessary treatment. I do not understand why your dentist did not take any xray prior to extraction, and you stating that the tooth was healthy ! this is very alarming

Seek dental help as soon as possible.

Best of luck !
1 UpVoted this answer
It seems that it was a difficult extraction for your dentist. I would go see an oral surgeon for a second opinion even if your dentist did not refer you to one. An oral surgeon has the expertise on how to proceed regarding the broken part of tooth left.
1 UpVoted this answer
First off, your description of the whole matter is unsettling. To remove a "healthy" tooth is questionable, but to do so without an xray is simply foolish. This is especially true with concerns about difficulty and depth of any extraction. Then, it is poor judgment to continue any procedure (especially when "drilling") without the xray as one is necessary to avoid vital structures like the nerve and vessels in the lower jaw. An xray is also necessary to determine if broken tooth structure or a root remained or was even displaced into those same nerves and/or vessels. In the case of broken teeth, xray confirmation of fragments is a matter of "informed consent" not "guesswork". This having been said, was a "consent form" even used? It is a fact that some providers do not have adequate clinical judgment or expertise to remove teeth.
John R. Scuba
1 UpVoted this answer
An x-ray should have been taken before the extraction (to aid in proper diagnosis) and any time there is concern about the completeness of the procedure a post extraction x-ray should be taken to compare and determine if any tooth root remains. I can not speculate on the appropriateness of leaving a fragment behind without seeing the xray. You should seek a second opinion preferably from an oral surgeon.