Why do I need to re-do of my previous RCT?

Occasionally a tooth that has undergone endodontic treatment fails to heal or pain continues despite therapy. As occasionally happens with any dental or medical procedure, a tooth may not heal as expected after initial treatment for a variety of reasons:

  • Narrow or curved canals that were not treated during the initial procedure.

  • Complicated canal anatomy went undetected in the first procedure.

  • The placement of the crown or other restoration was delayed following the endodontic treatment.

  • The restoration did not prevent salivary contamination to the inside of the tooth.

In other cases, a new problem can jeopardize a tooth that was successfully treated. For example:

  • New decay can expose the root canal filling material to bacteria, causing a new infection in the tooth.

  • A loose, cracked or broken crown or filling can expose the tooth to new infection.

  • A tooth can sustain a fracture.

How is it performed?

As the name implies, the whole Root Canal Treatment needs to be redone in an attempt to address the primary cause for the failure of the initial therapy. In many cases, we can salvage your old metal or ceramic crown by making a conservative access opening through the crown. In some cases, all complex restorative materials-crown, post and core material-must be disassembled and removed to permit access to the root canals.

During the initial phase of the treatment, the old root canal filling is carefully removed., We will then carefully examine the inside of your tooth using magnification and illumination, searching for any fracture, additional canals or unusual anatomy, obstructions that requires treatment.

After cleaning the canals, we will re-fill and seal the canals and place a temporary filling in the tooth. If the canals are unusually narrow or blocked, an endodontic surgery may be needed in future.

After retreatment, you will need to return to your dentist as soon as possible to have a new crown or other restoration placed on the tooth to protect and restore it to its full function.

* Pictures reproduced with permission from the American Association of Endodontists