Veterinary Dentistry Today



What abnormalities do you see here in this 4 year old mixed breed dog?

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    A right mandibular 1st molar (409) furcation region enamel defect, coronal to a region of inflamed gingiva.


Given this presentation, what might you expect the radiographs to look like:


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    A defect in the furcation of the tooth, root convergence, furcation bone loss and possible periapical lucencies.  Although the right side of the patient demonstrates only questionable periapical changes the left mandibular first molar (309) shows significant lucencies.


    This condition is commonly bilateral.  Root convergence, or dilaceration, resulting in a radiographic appearance similar to dens invaginatus (dens-in-dente) occurs. The infolding of the developing tooth results in a malformation allowing endodontic communication with periodontal tissues.  Oral microbes invade the tooth which eventually results in pulp necrosis.

    Extraction is generally accepted to be the treatment of choice for these teeth. Although, some veterinary dentists anecdotally report success with endodontic treatment, in some cases.