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Oral Surgery/Bone graft & nicotine patch


You answered a question for me recently about a cyst on my palate. I am now scheduled for a bone graft because the infection dissolved a large portion of bone.

Unfortunately, I am a smoker. I was advised to stop smoking prior to the procedure, which I have done. However, I am using the nicotine patch. Is this OK? I have read that the nicotine may suppress bone growth. I know this sounds crazy... but, I have opted to use the patch because I actually smoke for therapeutic reasons. I have ulcerative colitis and my condition became seriously worse after I quit smoking 3 years ago. I resumed smoking on the advice of 2 different specialists. Anyway, that's why I have decided to go with the patch... because if I have no nicotine, I am concerned my colitis may become unmanageable, again. At which time, I will be put on immunosuppressants, which I assume will not help with osteogenesis.

I'm definitely willing to stop using the patch if that is in the best interest of the bone graft. I'd value your opinion.

Tonya - Nicotine patches should be okay.  Just to let you know, I too have ulcerative colitis and I have been under medicinal treatment with a medication for the past 14 years that has quieted the problem completely.  Speak with your gastroenterologist about the medication ASACOL.  I have found it to be a "god send" without any episodes over the past 14 years and yet I was overwhelmed with problem for ten years earlier.  

So use the patches and that will should no effect on the graft healing

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Joel S. Teig, DMD, Diplomate ABOMS, retired


I am a board certified oral and maxillofacial surgeon 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 practicing for over 20 years. Assistant Clincal Professor at 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 Oral and Maxillofacial Surgical Residency - Roosevelt Hospital, NYC

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