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International Archives of Medicine

, 2:32

First Online: 24 October 2009Received: 19 June 2009Accepted: 24 October 2009


BackgroundIn this report, the problems of third molar surgery have been reviewed from the perspective of both patient and clinician; additionally an overall analysis of preoperative imaging investigations was carried out.

Specifically, three main areas of interest were investigated: the prediction of surgical difficulty and potential complications; the assessment of stress and anxiety and finally the assessment of postoperative complications and the surgeon-s experience.

FindingsIn the first study, the prediction of surgical difficulty and potential injury to the inferior alveolar nerve was assessed. This was achieved by examining the patient-s orthopantomograms and by using the Pederson Difficulty Index PDI. Several radiological signs were identified and a classification tree was created to help predict the incidence of such event.

In the second study, a prospective assessment addressing the patient-s stress and anxiety pre-, intra- and postoperatively was employed. Midazolam was the active drug used against placebo. Objective and subjective parameters were assessed, including measuring the cortisol level in saliva. Midazolam was found to significantly reduce anxiety levels and salivary cortisol was identified as an accurate anxiety marker.

In the third study, postoperative complications and the surgeon-s experience were examined. Few patients in this study suffered permanent nerve dysfunction. Junior surgeons reported a higher complication rate particularly in trismus, alveolar osteitis, infection and paraesthesia over the distributions of the inferior alveolar and lingual nerves. In apparent contrast, senior surgeons reported higher incidence of postoperative bleeding.

DiscussionThese studies if well employed can lead to favourable alteration in patient management and might have a positive impact on future healthcare service.

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Autor: Waseem Jerjes - Tahwinder Upile - Panagiotis Kafas - Syedda Abbas - Jubli Rob - Eileen McCarthy - Peter McCarthy - Colin H


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