Vertical root fracture treatment?

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Nic

Junior member
Joined
Jun 11, 2009
Messages
3
I'm hoping someone can help with this problem.

I wear partial dentures and have done for some years. My remaining 12 natural teeth, six on top and six at the bottom are all at the front (canines and incisors).

About three months ago I started to get a pain in one of my top lateral incisors when I bite - but not when I'm biting down as such, more when I stop and the pressure comes off the tooth. Hope that makes sense.

Anyway, I went to my NHS dentist and he took X-rays but said he couldn't see anything. There doesn't seem to be any infection and he can't spot a cracked tooth. However, he did say that there is somethig called a vertical tooth fracture, or VFR, which is not always detectable via X-Ray. He believes that may be the cause of the problem.

The treatment he has offered is 1) filling, which he doesn't think will help at all; 2) a root canal which he says is unlikely to be of any use if this is a VFR and 3) extraction of the tooth. He says root canals of VFRs in incisors rarely succeed, hence this option.

We agreed that I'd wait to see how things progressed before making a final decision.

Now as it happens I don't necessarily mind an extraction all that much: I'm used to dentures, mine are comfortable and it won't bother me to add a tooth to my upper partial. But I was wondering if this is the best way forward. Are VFRs really undetectable and why can't a root canal work? I must say I've had several root canals that haven't worked and I ended up having that tooth extracted anyway. But this is different.

Meanwhile, my tooth continues to hurt when I eat (or relax my bite) and, in effect, I can't chew with it or bite into anything as it's one of the ones that you use when sticking a sandwich in your mouth, for example, 'cos that's a tooth you tear things off with. I'm also starting to get some sensitivity to cold things.

What should I do?

Many thanks...
 
N

Nic

Junior member
Joined
Jun 11, 2009
Messages
3
Bump again. Is there really no-one who can answer this?
 
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FinnishGirl

Well-known member
Joined
May 13, 2008
Messages
372
The dentist who usually answers questions here is taking some holiday from this forum.
 
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annie778

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 28, 2008
Messages
816
I don't think a dentist on here could really ascertain the best way forward without seeing your x rays etc. But from what I remember zz's approach was quite positive when it came to fixing root fractured teeth. The skill of the dentist who fixes it must come into play with something like this. But I guess one option if you want to stay in the nhs is to ask your dentist if he can refer you to a specialist nhs endodontist for an opinion. I don't think that would be an unreasonable request.
 
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thornhilldentist

Guest
Unfortunately, with a vertical root fracture when the crack extends down the root, the tooth cannot be saved. Eventually there will be infection and pain. It is recommended that the tooth be removed. Emergency dentist
 
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