Oral Surgery/Numbness


I had a biopsy about 48 hours ago. My tongue is feeling better, however I have numbness where the incision is. I've been reading all over about this being permanent. My OS told me to give them a call when they reopen on monday, however I can't feel much. Cold take a few seconds to kick in, and I really can't feel anything touching it. Should I be worried?

Meg it is early to worry about damage to the nerve that provides sensation to the tongue.  The numbness you now have could be from the stretching of the tissues or it ciuld be that ths nerve might have been cut.  Either way you need to give it 6-7 weeks before being concerned.  If onky a minor trauma from stretching occurred it will take few weeks for the nerve to come back to normal functioning.  If however there is no change by 6 weeks, the tongue needs to be evaluated by the surgeon.  If the nerve was cut it needs to be repaired by 8 weeks after the surgery.

So for now relax.  If you feel burning, shocks or itching that is a good sign that the nerve is just traumatized and should come back soon.  So for now do nothing, but if by 6 weeks it is still numb, get back to the surgeon to determine if repair of the nerve is appropriate.   I hope it soon returns to full feeling.   Any questions get back to me.

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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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