Are Antibiotics Necessary before a Tooth Extraction?


The idea of using antibiotics before surgery (known as antibiotic prophylaxis) has changed over time. It may not be recommended or necessary at all, especially prior to a procedure in the dentist’s office.

Joint Replacement Surgery

The Canadian Dental Association recommends against individuals who have had a joint operation using antibiotics before a dental surgery. The primary reason for this guideline is that the patient could be at a higher risk of contracting common infections. Consult your orthopedic surgeon about antibiotic prophylaxis before your dental procedure.

When Prophylaxis Isn’t Recommended

In the past, medical experts recommended people with certain heart conditions take a short-term dose of antibiotics before a dental visit. The major goal of this guideline was to reduce the risk of contracting infective endocarditis. However, recent research suggests the risks of taking such a prescription outweigh any possible benefits. The following cardiac complications do not necessitate antibiotic prophylaxis:

• Prolapse of the mitral valve
Bicuspid heart disease
• Rheumatic valve disease
• Calcified aortic stenosis
• An atrial septal failure, a ventricular septal failure or hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

Are Antibiotics Necessary before a Tooth Extraction?

When Prophylaxis IS of Use

Some people are more predisposed to develop an adverse reaction to oral surgery if they suffer from certain cardiac complications. The American Heart Association recommends antibiotic prophylaxis for patients with:

• A prior case of infective endocarditis
• A prosthetic heart valve
• Previous cardiac transplants involving the heart valve
• Unrepaired cyanotic congenital cardiac disease

If you are not sure about your medical history or the guidelines for your cardiac problem, you are advised to consult a heart specialist before having oral surgery.

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Next time you pay a visit to Cosmo Dental Centre, seek expert advice from our dental health professionals about your medical history. If you are in need of professional dental services and consultation, call us today at (519) 659-2767.

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