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Oral Surgery/Cracked root


I got a root canal earlier this summer and went to a dentist to get a crown. To prepare for the crown he inserted a screw.  I was then instructed to wait two weeks then then have the crown installed. The tooth hurt the entire two weeks. I went in to get the crown and told the dentist of the pain and he did an x-ray and saw that the root had been cracked by the screw.  He says that I now need to get the tooth extracted and either get an implant or a three tooth bridge. He said he would pay for the extraction which seems like an admission that he made a mistake. He also said he would install a three tooth bridge for free.

Two questions: should he have to pay for an implant if I choose to go that way? Second which is better an implant or a bridge?

Taury -  First of all, both implants and a three unit bridge.  The key factor on which is best is the quality of the dentist and his knowledge.  Neither replacement technique is good, but I question the dentist's ability after screwing into the tooth hard enough to fracture the tooth.  

You didn't say which tooth was damaged.  I also need to know about the teeth surrounding the fractured tooth.  If you can, send me a picture and xray picture of the teeth.  With that information I should be able to give you a better answer to which procedure is best for you.  

One last thing, the dentist should also pay for an implant replacement if he made a mistake of fracturing the tooth.

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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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