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Dental advice needed please!

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Sorry if this is a bit gross, but I need advice!

I'm in the process of getting a dental implant, and the oral surgeon said I needed a bone graft first to build up the bone in the area, then I could get the screw implanted after that had healed, then the tooth itself after that.

The bill for the initial operation charged me for 30 minutes of general anaesthetic, then a largeish amount for every 15 minutes thereafter up to about 1 1/2-2 hours (I can't remember now). I was only at there for an hour in total including recovery, but they wouldn't refund any of the general anaesthetic charges, and said that's just what it was. I was annoyed that they charge in increments, then don't give you money back if it doesn't take that long!

Then a couple of months ago (a couple of months after the operation) I had a sliver of bone coming out through my gum, and the oral surgeon just went to yank it out with pliers without telling me what was going on. I freaked out, and wouldn't let him near my mouth until he put numbing gel on it first because I didn't like the idea of having a piece of bone being ripped out of my gum!

Then at my last check up a month ago I got him to look at another lump I had in my gum that I thought was another piece of bone and it turned out to be the titanium screw that's holding the bone graft in place! He said it'd be fine, and if it came through the gum just to keep rinsing with warm salty water. I think it's come out more since, but still hasn't poked through the gum. I can feel it sticking out though, and it's hurting today, so I think it's about to split the gum. I had no idea there was even a titanium screw there, and he didn't tell me whether the screw is permanent or not. I would assume it is, because it would be stuck to the bone now, but then I have no idea if it's going to be there permanently sticking through the gum!

The oral surgeon is a really nice guy, but I feel as though I've had too many problems with them, and am not getting enough information from him about what's going on.

What would you do? Is there anyone with a dental background who can tell me if these problems I've had are normal, or if you think these things shouldn't happen?

post #2 of 9
I have never heard of a bone graft before, but to me it sounds like you need to find another oral surgeon. If anything, a different one needs to look at it and tell you what your options are. It sounds like the oral surgeon you are going to either doesn't know what he is doing, or doesn't care.
post #3 of 9
I have no idea about the procedure, but I'm sorry you're having so much trouble! I definately would not be comfortable with this surgeon/dentist. I would not someone doing things to such an important part of my body without explaining to me EXACTLY what is going on. But I do know that sometimes doctor's get so busy and so used to the routine of doing things, they forget to explain details *but thats not an excuse!* Maybe either call or go in and ask to have a few minutes to sit down and talk with the doctor and ask all the questions. It might help to sit and think about it before hand and write down any questions that come to mind, so you don't get there and then forget!
post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
I'm seeing him again tomorrow morning, and I'm working out what to say.

Certainly at the last appointment I didn't ask any more about the screw because I was in shock - I had no idea it was there. It also got me thinking that the point of the bone graft was to build up bone because the screw that holds the tooth wouldn't hold properly unless there was more bone there. Then how come this screw is staying there fine????? The bone graft on its own cost the same as the next 2 operations combined!

He's usually too busy telling me about his upcoming holiday in Australia (I'm Australian), and I keep on thinking "yes, what I'm paying for this surgery is probably sending you there...).

I think if I don't get my questions answered properly, I'll go elsewhere.
post #5 of 9
The question about how this screw is staying in is a good one, I didn't think of that! Good luck, I hope you are able to find out everything you need, I'll keep you in my thoughts!
post #6 of 9
Screw in implants are the most permantant... i didnt like the process photos I saw so I will opt for the less permnant pop in tooth...
GET a SECOND opionion
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
I want permanent though. I lost this tooth (and it's my big front tooth) when I was about 7 or 8 and have been going through braces, operations, and orthodontists for 18 years now. I want it over and done with.

I do like the idea of a second opinion anyway, it will be interesting to compare prices.
post #8 of 9
Find another oral surgeon!!!! I'm currently getting my pre reqs. for dental school - no dentist with 1/2 a brain would treat their patient that way! Get a different suergon!
post #9 of 9
My SIL is an anethesiologist and she found a WONDERFUL oxillo-maxillo (sp?) oral surgeon whose specialty is repairing teeth & jaws damaged mostly in car accidents and industrial accidents. He is extremely knowledgeable and soooo understanding when dealing with my disabled daughter's tooth extractions. Maybe you could find another oral surgeon similar to him - one with a heart of gold!
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