Is general anesthetic really necessary?


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I just finished a consultation regarding the extraction of a split # 14 molar. It is broken six mm above the gum line.

It is broken near the sinuses, so the surgeon said in might leave a hole that an EN and T surgeon would need to fix later.

I have an HMO that will not put a dent in the cost.

The tooth extraction is only $110, but the general anesthesia in a whopping $252 for each 15 minute interval for a total of $756 for just anesthesia. Total cost is $866.

My pathetic insurance will only pay $40 total.

This surgeon only gives general anesthesia, so I would like to know if this is really necessary, or would a local anesthesia suffice?
This surgeon only provides general anesthesia for all patients..
 
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MattKW

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Can't be sure without Xrays, but a general dentist competent in surgical extractions might be able to get it out. I'm surprised that the surgeon won't do it under LA. Get another opinion.
 
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I haven't had an extraction since I was a child but the last time it was with a local anaesthetic and despite the injection it really hurt (I can still remember the intense pain and I was 11!). That was just a simple premolar which was not broken. So perhaps the surgeon realises it's complex and does not want you to be distressed or in pain.

Why don't you ask whether you can be sedated instead of put right under.
 

MattKW

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Some surgeons simply prefer to do work under GA. They line up a day of patients and go through them very quickly. I wish I could do a lot of my work on people under GA too.
6mm under the gum just turns it into a surgical extraction of a 1st molar that many general dentists encounter frequently. They are nearly always near the sinuses, but as a general dentist I've only punctured the sinus once in 37 years, and it was also the only time I had to refer a surgical 1st molar to a surgeon for repair.
Upper teeth are easy to effectively numb with local anaesthetic, but a surgical can be a bit stressful given the greater time and difficulty.
 
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I had my 14 molar extracted one week ago.
The procedure was done under local anesthetic and took about 30 minutes.

The actual surgery only produced minimal discomfort. but the primary source of discomfort was having my mouth forced to stay open with a block.

I was disappointed to discover I needed to pay an extra $450 for a bone graft. I was not told this until the day of the surgery. In fact, I was told virtually nothing until the day of the surgery. The oral surgeon did not even look in my mouth during the initial consultation, which really was not even a consultation. He just read the dentists referral out loud to himself, and then I was sent on my way.
This lack of information seemed strange, but i guess it worked out fine. I will have my stitches removed in five days.
I imagine the bone graft is a simple procedure since the entire operation took about 30 minutes.
The surgeon was carrying on a conversation about vacations with the receptionist as he was applying the stitches, so i suppose this did not require much concentration on his part.
I hope the bone graft was necessary. I hate to think this is a money grab.
 

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