My husband had a wisdom tooth pulled yesterday and part of it broke when it was pulled. The oral surgeon left the broken part in his mouth and said it wouldn't hurt anything. Is that true?

—Rhonda from Iowa

Dear Rhonda,

Your oral surgeon is right - it won't hurt anything. I did that myself sometimes - leave a root fragment that was way down by the nerve or something.

There is a small risk that there could be trouble with the piece, but there are occasions when the risk of going after an embedded piece is far greater than the tiny risk of leaving it in.

Remember that the oral surgeon has to accept responsibility for the outcome. The law holds him or her to this. So before that decision is made, the oral surgeon weighs that in his or her mind, because if there really is any trouble later, the surgeon will have to defend that decision before his or her peers.

I hope this is helpful.

—Dr. Hall

This information is provided for you by the cosmetic referral service, and was personally written by Dr.
David Hall.

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