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Dental Abscess (cont.)

Dental Abscess Prognosis

The prognosis is good for resolution of a small dental abscess once it has ruptured or been drained. If the symptoms are improving, it is unlikely that the infection is getting worse. Proper follow-up care with your dentist is mandatory for reassessment of your infection and for taking care of the problem tooth.

  • Care might include pulling the tooth or having a root canal performed on it.
  • Dental abscesses that have extended to the floor of the mouth or to the neck can threaten a person's airway and ability to breathe and may be life-threatening unless they are properly drained.

Medically reviewed by Kenneth Rotskoff, MD, DDS; Board Certified Dentistry, Oral/Maxillofacial Surgery

Author: Jerry Balentine, DO, FACEP
Editor: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, Chief Medical Editor, eMedicineHealth.com

Previous contributing authors and editors:
Author: Michael Martin, MD, Staff Physician, Department of Emergency Medicine, Temple University.

Coauthor(s): Jacob W Ufberg, MD, Assistant Professor, Department of Emergency Medicine, Temple University School of Medicine.

Editors: Ruben Olmedo, MD, Chief, Division of Toxicology, Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Emergency Medicine, Mount Sinai Medical Center;
Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD, Senior Pharmacy Editor, eMedicine;
Steven L Bernstein, MD, Vice-Chair, Academic Affairs, Department of Emergency Medicine, Newark Beth Israel Medical Center; Assistant Professor, Department of Emergency Medicine, Mt Sinai School of Medicine.

REFERENCES:

Francis, Mark. "Sjögren Syndrome." eMedicineHealth. Aug. 10, 2005.

Tintinalli, Judith, et al., eds. Emergency Medicine: A Comprehensive Study Guide, 6th ed.. New York: McGraw-Hill Professional, 2003.


Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 3/28/2014

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Dental Abscess »

A dentoalveolar abscess is an acute lesion characterized by localization of pus in the structures that surround the teeth.

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