Pulpectomy


What are the other Names for the Procedure?

  • Dental Pulpectomy
  • Pediatric Pulpectomy
  • Pulp Therapy (Pulpectomy)

What is the Pulpectomy Procedure?

  • The pulp is the soft and sensitive part of teeth found on the inside (central portion of tooth) that has nerves and blood vessels. The outer layers are hard and consist of enamel and dentin
  • Sometimes, the pulp tissue may get damaged or infected, when the outer part of tooth is injured or affected. In order to save and restore the tooth, dentists may recommend the surgical removal of all of the diseased or necrotic pulp. This is known as Pulpectomy. The procedure is mainly performed in children with primary teeth (milk teeth)
  • Saving a primary tooth helps in enabling normal eating, chewing, and speaking, and in maintaining “permanent teeth” profile (dental arch) by preserving space that may be otherwise occupied by adjacent growing teeth, which can lead to overcrowding
Typically, in Pulpectomy, the diseased material is removed from the root canal and pulp chamber or crown of the tooth. However, if pulp is partially removed, only from the pulp chamber/crown of the tooth, it is known as pulpotomy.

What part of the Body does the Procedure involve?

Pulpectomy involves the affected region of the tooth and gums.

Why is the Pulpectomy procedure Performed?

Pulpectomy procedure may be performed for the following reasons:
  • Severe trauma to tooth causing pulp damage
  • Inflammation of the pulp causing pulpitis due to cavities, when the pulp cannot be restored
  • Abscess formation in the primary molar teeth
  • When X-rays show loss of bone in the infected milk teeth
  • In some cases, to maintain the profile of teeth (arch)
A Pulpectomy is mainly performed in children with milk teeth, since the roots are not deep into the teeth (which help when milk teeth are replaced by permanent teeth). Removing damaged milk teeth prematurely (without thought to saving it), may cause misalignment and other dental issues, when permanent teeth take their place. So, a Dental Pulpectomy may be preferable to tooth extraction (in children), where necessary. However, if the tooth is severely damaged and cannot be restored, it is extracted/removed.

What are some Alternative Choices for the Procedure?

Pulpectomy is a preferred treatment to avoid loss of tooth in the affected individual. However, if the tooth cannot be salvaged it may have to be extracted. Also, when the child cannot sit through long dental procedures, a tooth extraction may be the only option.
The alternatives may include measures to avoid damage to teeth through:
  • Educating child on oral care
  • Regular brushing and practice good eating habits

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