Q. I had a severe toothache following an implant procedure. What could be the cause?

Answered by
Dr. Soheel Hussain Zargar
and medically reviewed by Dr. Preetha J
This is a premium question & answer published on Nov 06, 2020

Hello doctor,

My question is, after an onlay implant procedure, I got some severe toothache. Today I went to make an x-ray for myself and noticed that one of the roots is reduced somehow. What can be the cause of this? And can a root canal save it?

Many thanks for considering my request.



Welcome to

After evaluating your radiograph (attachment removed to protect patient identity), there is resorption of one root with sclerosis around. This can be due to prolonged trauma from biting. The significant reasons for resorption as such are trauma, any periapical lesion, orthodontic wire. There is no need to worry, a root canal can correct it, but we need to check your tooth's vitality. Can you share more details about the tooth? Do you have pain in the region, and what was the reason you placed an onlay? Do you have any other symptoms and signs?

Hi doctor,

Thank you for the prompt response. An onlay was needed as there was a bigger cavity in the tooth, and most of the tooth at that point was filled similarly. My dentist was afraid that if he fills in the new cavity, it will weaken the tooth structure too much, and it will eventually break. The onlay was too high at first, so he adjusted the size, but after that, my tooth was still hurting during bites, and it started hurting during brushing. How fast is the resorption process? Even before the onlay, the root was entirely calcified because the fillings' surface was too flat, can that one-month wait speed up the process too much?



Welcome back to

Thanks for the feedback.

So it is quite clear the resorption happened due to high point and subsequent trauma. Now there is no need to worry, endodontic procedures can correct it, and your tooth will be fine. Yes, you are relatively young, and due to that, reaction to trauma from a high point was fast, which lead to rapid resorption. You need to consult an endodontist, and he will do it.

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