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Dentistry/Maxiallry Pain-Sinus Lift


QUESTION: Dr. Tieg. I had a sinus lift eight weeks ago, and I have redness and pain in the left ridge area where the window was made, when I drink soda, or any citrus drinks, that were allowed to drink one week after surgery. The area is slight red and a little painful. I just drink water now and have done salt water, but no change. I know there is probably only a thin gum tissue around that area, also I have not worn my denture since surgery because of the swelling of so much bone that had to be placed . Any help appreciated. Thanks

ANSWER: JoAnn -  Of course, without directly examining you or viewing xrays of the area, it is a little difficult to be sure what is actually occurring.  Say that, from the redness and pain, there is definitely either just inflammation or infection.  I have a couple of questions for you to possibly assist me in arriving at a diagnosis and some suggestions.  

The pain that you have, you say it is in the left ridge area where the window was made, does the pain radiate from there towards your eye?  Are you having any headaches in the temple region?  Are you experiencing sore throats?  When you bite down, about how much distance is there from the bottom of the ridge to the teeth on the lower jaw or the lower ridge?   Do you have any stuffiness in your nose on that side?

So if you could get back to me and let me know the answer to some of the above questions I will get back to you.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Dr. Tieg, I do not have any of the symtom's that you mention, only a little redness, and only pain when previously drinking soda, or and juices. None from food touching that back ridge area. After eight weeks I thought it would be closed up by now, but maybe it takes longer. I can't have denture adjusted yet, I was told because  of slight swelling, on the side of my upper ridge, so I eat pureed food.  Thanks

I understand that you fortunately do not have the symptoms I wrote about, but by eight weeks after a sinus lift, the site of the surgery should have calmed down.  If it has not, there is a deficit in either the surgical results or the individuals ability to heal properly.  That proper healing can occur from a surgical problem or other factors, such as an infection.  

So if by eight weeks the site of the surgery has not calmed down, the surgeon needs to objectively discover the cause of the delayed healing and attempt to compensate and correct it so healing progresses quicker and allows the patient to function properly.  Being that it is now eight weeks since the surgery, the time has passed when the surgeon should have objectively discovered the cause of the healing delay.

Slight swelling after the surgery for 2-3 weeks could possibly be appropriate for those who heal slowly, but for this length of time the area should have calmed down.  Your surgeon needs to discover the cause of the delayed healing so you can function better.  The swelling should have resolved unless there is a deficit in the healing.


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Joel S. Teig, DMD, Diplomate ABOMS, retired


I am a board certified oral and maxillofacial surgeon and I am available to answer questions related to tooth extractions, implant insertion, facial recontruction, facial and oral tumor removal, TMJ dysfunction and various successful treatments, including surgery if all else fails, and occlusal discrepancy requiring orthognathic or jaw surgery.


Board Certified Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon practicine for over 20 years. Assistant Clincal Professor and State University School of Dentistry.

American Dental Association, American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons

BA -University of Connecticut DMD - University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine

Awards and Honors
National Honor Society (OKU), Philadelphia County Dental Society, Mosby Book Award, Oral Surgery Honors, Summa Cum Laude

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