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Case Study: An interesting dental case

Whilst playing with his ball, Ben, a six year old border collie, managed to catch the ball in his mouth awkwardly. This led to his right upper canine tooth being forced upwards, causing a swelling to appear on his nose (pictured). The x-ray also shows where the tooth had been forced upwards. The tooth needed to be extracted as it had become loose and would have caused pain and possible infection if it had been left in place.

Ben's teeth

Canine teeth have very long roots so to extract them successfully and not leave any root behind, a flap of gum needs to be lifted to gain access to the tooth root. The series of pictures shows the procedure. Firstly, cuts are made in the gum and the flap created is then carefully lifted off the tooth using a special instrument called a periosteal elevator. The bone surrounding the tooth root can then be carefully burred so that the root can be freed and any sharp edges can be smoothed. Once the complete tooth has been removed, the flap of gum is then stitched back into place using absorbable sutures.

Ben's tooth operationBen's tooth operation

Ben made an uneventful recovery and will be more careful with his ball next time!

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