This week I was scheduled to have two posts placed in my crown-lengthened tooth. That didn't happen.
Instead of feeling no pain in the tooth, it became increasingly sensitive to pressure. Then, a few weeks ago, I couldn't tolerate anything cold in that quadrant of my mouth. So I went to see the prosthodontist who tapped the teeth in the area. The cold sensitivity was coming from #15, not #14 and he thought it would go away. It did.
But he also acknowledged that #14 should not be sensitive to touch. He sent me back to the endodontist. He considered for a second the possibility of a fourth canal but the X-ray gave no such indication. He thought it more likely that I had a microscopic fracture that could possibly be found via an apicoectomy.
That would have further compromised my bone. He consulted with the periodontist and prosthodontist about the best course of action.
I realized, at long last, that the long-term solution was an implant after all.
The periodontist took a cone beam scan to make sure I had adequate bone in the area, especially tricky if I didn't since this tooth is so close to the sinus cavity. In fact, one of my roots extended into the base of the cavity. However, there is adequate bone.
So, on Tuesday, instead of getting two posts, I had what was left of my tooth removed. The space was filled with bone graft material that acts as scaffolding for osteocytes (bone-producing cells) to grow into. Then came the stitches and eating instructions for the next three weeks. As you know, now I wait four months. That'll take me into the New Year but by the time I see you at LAB DAY Chicago, I'll have had the implant placed.
I will never know if my natural tooth would have failed if the prep had been properly done. I saved the extracted tooth. It's in three pieces. It's been pain-free.
And now that I'm in the best hands with this renowned periodontist [he lectures for several implant manufacturers] and also have the highest regard for the prosthodontist, I cannot imagine ever using any practitioner again who does not come highly recommended from within our circle of industry friends.
Many excellent dentists are out there and I hope you have the pleasure of working with them. Even more, I hope that when you know a client is NOT excellent, you make every effort to help enlighten him about what really good patient care looks like from the technical side. I certainly now know what it feels like from the patient side and I really like how that feels.