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Oral Surgery/palate surgery

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QUESTION: Hello. I am 31 years old. I had surgery four and a half months ago to remove what the surgeon thought was a fissure cyst. My palate was numb, painful, and had a lump on it(was an infection).  My surgeon told me that he went through the hard palate to remove tissue and the biopsy came back that it was not a cyst and he doesnt know exactly what it was.  At this point there is a small hole and a small hard lump on the edge of where the insicion was.  What I wanted to know was at my age how long does it take for bone to fill in in my palate and heal and will that little lump probably go away after some time?  Thanks.

ANSWER: Barbara - The most important factor in any healing is to arrest the source of the problem.  I know you said it is was an infection, but the cause of the infection is important to know.  If not, the problem may reform and the area not heal at all.  

If the source of the problem is gone, the bone should take only 4-6 weeks to fill in.  I don't know the cause of the lump, but it should not be there.  For that reason, I am not sure that something might still be present and preventing a normal healing.  The hole should have closed by now.  If the surgeon does not have a reason, you need to get a second opinion from a different board certified oral and maxillofacial surgeon.

I wish you well and hope it heals soon, but if not, get that second opinion.

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

QUESTION: thank you so much for your response that was very helpful.  I wanted to know the main concern for me is that where this little hard lump is Im feeling pressure and it almost feels like it could be a foreign object.  Is it possible that during surgery, and he did go through my hard palate, that I could have a bone chip that is left over?  Have you ever seen that in your practice? The lump is hard and kind of angular. Thanks!

Answer
Barbara -  the bump could definitely be a loose piece of bone dislodged by the surgeon.  I have seen this if there was some bleeding during the surgery and it hid the bone chip.

Try some warm salt water rinses for about 5 minutes,  4-5 times a day on that palatal area.  It should help reduce inflammation and pain.

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Joel S. Teig, DMD, Diplomate ABOMS, retired

Expertise

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.

Experience

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

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

Education/Credentials
BA- University of Connecticut DMD-University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine Oral and Maxillofacial Surgical Residency - Roosevelt Hospital, NYC

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