After reading what fallllea went through, I am beginning to wonder if I have the same thing.
Last year I had my #3 tooth extracted. It was a difficult extraction and took over two hours. Two days later I had the worst pain. When I saw my dentist he said it was dry socket, but I am not so sure. For 4 weeks he used a curette to scrape the socket(4 times),packed it with antibiotics, and I was on oral antibiotics. Twice, he tried to drill the bone to start a new blood clot. After reading about dry socket I have not come across this kind of treatment.
Three months ago, just as I was about to get my bridge, my #4 tooth broke in half. It had been root canaled. The next day I started having pain and was put on an antibiotic. It helped for a few days, but the pain came back worst then before. Soon my whole mouth hurt. The tooth was pulled in the middle of June, but the pain did not go away. I was put on Cleocin two times. Each time it would get alittle better, but then come back. Then my #2 tooth started to hurt. At the end of July, I saw an oral surgeon. He opened up the socket and said I had alot of dead bone and tissue. He cleaned it out and it felt alot better for a few days. Ten days later, while on vacation, the pain and swelling came back. I saw an MD. He said I had an abscess near my #2 tooth, and he put me on 20 days of penicillin to get me through my vacation. Today is my 18th day on penicillin. The pain has lessened quite a bit, but is still there. My #5 tooth is also getting tender. I feel like the penicillin is just holding the infection. Could this be osteomyelitis? I see my dentist and MD on Thursday. What should I ask them? Thanks. Sorry so long.
YOu can ask about osteomyelitis but having a test done now won't show anything. That is the problem i had.
I went through too many things to list here but i learned a lot.
First of all, if you did have a bone infection, they could never culture it now and find out which bacteria is causing it, because you've been on so many antibiotics.
Second, anything where the bone is scraped, or an extraction will give a positive result on the Nuclear Bone Scan. The bone scan shows changes in the bone...so it could be infection or a tumour.It can't usually distinguish between the two.
So if an oral surgeon was just in the area scraping the bone and cleaning up the area it would show changes in the area for more than 8 weeks or longer.
To get the bone scan you would have to wait til nothing invasive like that was done.
And bone scans are only as good as the people who read them. I believe you can have a bone infection that is missed because the person reading the scan didn't know how to interpret the changes properly.
Then also, I had my scan after having IV antibiotics for less than 3 weeks. I have since read the antibiotics i took don't necessarily kill the infection, but they could mask it making it not show at the time of the test. You can also get funguses and other things which antibiotics won't touch. So without culturing the site, who knows what you could have.
That is why they usually don't test for all these things....they think it's uncommon. I dont' think it is. I know many people with pain, including me who were previously fine before root canals, extractions, etc. I had bone chips scraped off my bone, with my gum cut open with a metal grater like tool. Most pain is nerve damage, not bone infection, so if the bone infection scan comes up negative start checking into nerve damage which is becoming so common it is alarming.
Christie-my scan was so bad I had no trouble reading it.The oral surgeon used it to show where the bone was going to be removed.I had no gum tissue left.It literally " Lit up like a Christmas tree " ,but I was in the late stages and near death. Clouda-Get checked immediately.You sound almost like me .If you have pain-(something Is WRONG )My pain could not be pinpointed and would go from tooth to tooth.Plus there are WAY TOO MANY WAYS to re-treat a tooth before they give up and pull.This went on for over 3 yrs and NONE of the oral anti-botics help.YOU need home IV for at least 4 weeks and 6 would be good.The orals are deceptive.They back the infection off for days or weeks then it comes back and spreads a little more.You have to have the infected bone tissue removed to STOP the spreading.If it was not a rapid mover then I don't think there would be any need for an infectious disease team ( Except maybe for weight loss ). I guess I mean rapid for bone infection because it spreads in small areas over years.I think they were there because I looked so bad ,they thought I had AIDS. After tissue is removed , you are on IV meds.Then you have to be checked and re-checked and some touch-up bone tissue removal.In my opinion if you keep having pain,something is wrong.If you can,beg your MD to test for this AND INCLUDE NUKE SCAN.You may have to fight with insurance,but this is considered a medical problem and not a dental .Hurry Please and let me know.The more personal knowledge on this that is fed to the boards,the better.Best to all,Randy
Last Thursday I saw my denist. When I mentioned a bone infection she didn't know what I was talking about. She refered me to an endodontist to check out my teeth on both sides of the socket.
Yesterday I saw the endodontist. She said my teeth are fine. I asked her about a bone infection and she said my socket looked like it was healing and she saw nothing on the xrays.
Today, back to the oral surgeon. When he poked at the socket it was very painful. He said he would have to open it up. I asked about a bone infection. He said that you rarely get it in an upper jaw and my xray(from July) didn't show anything. When he opened it up he removed more bone and dead tissue. He said he sees this sometimes and doesn't know why it happens. I go back next week.
My MD appointment is next week. I will ask her for a gallium scan.
Has anyone ever heard of this happening? Is there a name for this, besides osteomyelitis? Thanks
This definitly sounds like osteomylitis(bone infection) to me, if you have dead bone and tissue! This is the same thing that my daughter is being treated for and Randy(faillea) has been through. As Randy has stated several times in his posts, and I have also found to be true, it canNOT be detected by x-rays alone. A bone scan must be done to show what areas are infected. Oral anitibiotics aren't strong enough to fight a bone infection. An IV drip(PICC-line) is required for 4-6 weeks and the proper antibiotic is determined by infectious disease dr. By just going in and scraping(debridment) the dead bone and tissue without the proper IV antibiotic and treatment required, the bone will continue to die and infection spread and prolong this disease. I am by no means an expert on this, but I have learned alot in a short period of time, from my daughters experience with it. I just wish there was a way for all the oral surgeons and MD's out there to be better educated on osteomylitis so that their patients didn't have to go through so much pain and suffering and damage. I pray your MD gets you the proper treatment necessary for this. Luckily, ours did! Keep us posted..good luck!
Trust me dear,Osteomylitis is something you neither want or want to mess with...It will cause you SEVERE non-stop pain...Even though Ive not had it in my face(that I know of)Ive had it in 2 Disc spaces in my Spine...Ya know that may be whats causing me severe pain in my face..Im glad I read this post...
Thanks for asking. I cancelled my MD appointment because I saw the oral surgeon the same day and he insisted again to me that it is not osteomyelitis. It has been two weeks since he opened it up. It still does not feel better. My whole mouth aches and is so sore. I feel like all my teeth are going bad. He said to give it two more weeks and see if it gets better. He said he was so aggressive last time he scraped the socket, there can't be anything in there.
I have an appointment next week with my MD. I just have a hard time being assertive. I will be, I know this can't be normal.
I saw my MD today. She looked at my mouth, and I told her everything. She said right away, she thinks it is osteomyelitis.(I didn't even mention the word) She called an infectious disease doctor that she works with, to discuss what to do. I am having a CT Scan done next week, as well as a full blood work-up. She told me that she couldn't believe it had gone on this long, and it was time to do something about it. She also said I would most likely need IV antibiotics and more surgery. She has an oral surgeon that she wants to use.
I feel so relieved that some action is finally being taken. Thanks to Randy and Wendy's mom, more people are becoming more aware of this painful desease.
Dear Clouda, I am so glad you finally went to your MD. It seems they are the only ones who recognize how serious a bone infection is. It's really to bad that the oral surgeons and other dental professionals can't see it for what it is, a serious and painful disease. Maybe they all know, but just can't admit or want to take on the responsibility, that it may have been caused by something they did or didn't do in treating their patient. It needs to be treated as quickly as possible with the combination of IV antibiotics and debridments(bone scraping). It is a long, drawn out process. Wendy has been on the IV antibiotics for 5 weeks now. She has had 3 debridments on the lower left jaw, and the dr. said he will probably have to do one on the lower right also. She still has constant pain, although not as severe as it was before. She still has a long way to go yet and is REALLY getting tired of this whole ordeal interfering with her life. She just falls asleep, and before you know it, it's time to get up and do the IV meds again. She's really getting cranky, you know how teens are when they don't get enough sleep!! I wish you all the best and pray for your speedy recovery from this. Let us know how everything is going. Cindy
Hi Clouda, How are you doing? Have you started your IV treatment yet? Wendy has been on it for 6 weeks now, and the dr. told us she would need it for another 3 weeks yet. Things are finally looking better for her. I hope all is well with you. Cindy
Dear Osteo., I'm glad to hear you have finally found the sources to acheive your recovery from this devastating disease. I'm very sorry to hear that you aren't getting any releif from your pain, though. My daughter, Wendy, has been on the home IV's for 8 weeks now, and has one more week to go. She too was in excruciating pain, until her last debridment( she's had 3 in all) She was on Clindamyacin 900mg every 8 hours, and still in pain. Then they did the 3rd surgery and added Ceftriaxone once a day, and within a week, was no longer needing pain meds. It's a long hard road to recovery. My prayers are with you and I will keep posting on Wendy's progress. Keep us informed on yours also. I agree that the more information shared will benefit many people. Cindy
Randi, congrats on your pregnancy! I pray you won't have any complications due to the osteo and the meds. Wendy also goes to a teaching hospital. Indiana University Hosp. She has had two bone scans(MRI) the infectious disease doctors ordered them. When she first went in, she was swollen on her whole side of face and neck. They immediatly admitted her in hosp. and started her on 900mg Clindamyacin. She is allergic to penicillain. She had already had two debridments by the oral surgeon who removed her wisdom teeth, before we even took her to Indiana University Hosp. but was only on oral antibiotics. After spending two days in hosp. they sent her home with PICC-line. Things went well for the first week on Clindamyacin every 8 hrs. Her swelling went down and her pain decreased. Then, the second week, her swelling and pain came back. She had to be admitted in hosp. again, this time for 5 days. They did her 3rd debridment then, and added the Ceftriaxone once a day along with the Clindamyacin. She had been on the Picc-line for 3 weeks but when they added her second antibiotic, they said it would have to be another 6 weeks more. I have never considered suing anyone before, so I don't know the process behind it. I don't even know if it really was the oral surgeons fault that she developed osteomyelitis after wisdom teeth extraction. All the doctors I ask just tell me that it is rare and just happened. I just can't accept that answer though. Wendy is only 18, in perfect health, never even had a cavity. The only reason she had her wisdom teeth removed in the first place, was because her orthodontist said when they did start to come in, they would grow sideways and push her other teeth. Wendy has always taken good care of her teeth, and even after wisdom teeth extraction, she followed instuctions to the "T". I just can't understand why this would happen to her.
I wish you the best and hope everything goes well for you Cindy
[This message has been edited by moderator2 (edited 10-26-2002).]
After posting about my problem on another board, I was told to check out this board. I can relate to all of this.
Over 6 months ago I had an upper left molar extracted. The pain has never gone away, and it has been cleaned out 3 times. I have had dead bone each time. I have been on antibiotics on and off, but it never clears up. The only thing that has shown on an xray is that it is healing very slow.(according to the oral surgeon) They don't seem to know anything about this or take it very seriously. Then they clean it out and say, "wow, that's where your pain is coming from".
I have been told to, brush the socket to toughen it up, use toothpaste for sensitive teeth, and see if it goes away on its own.
I feel like I am going to have to live like this forever. Some days are better than others, but the pain is always there. It seems to go in a pattern. Really bad throbbing, a hot sensation, bitter taste, and a feeling of pressure for a week or two. Then, a couple of days when it throbs on and off, but it is not as bad. The whole left side of my upper gum is painful when you press on it. Sometimes I can feel pieces of bone in my gums.
Does this sound like the symptoms of osteomyelitis?
Dear JoJo, If they are finding dead bone(blackened) when they open your gum, then it seems it must be caused from bone infection(osteomyelitis). This MUST be treated with IV antibiotics along with debridments(scraping away dead bone). Oral antibiotics aren't strong enough for an infection in the bone. If the oral surgeon you are seeing doesn't know how to treat it properly, then you should go to your family dr. and have them make arrangments to send you to someone who knows how to treat osteomyeltis of the jaw. Good luck. Cindy
I went to another oral surgeon. This one is from a teaching hospital. I told him what had been done and he took a panex. Nothing showed up on the panex. He did not seem to believe my other oral surgeon had found what he said he found. He thinks I have nerve damage and wants me to take medication for it. When I asked about the dead bone he said, "if there was dead bone, we only have his word for it". This has turned into a nightmare. Would osteomyelitis show on a panex? Please, can someone tell me what their symptoms were like with osteomyelitis. How could two oral surgeons disagree so completely, and why would one lie about finding the bone and tissue? This has been going on for almost eight months.
Dear JoJo, You should go back to the office of where you had your previous procedures done and request copies of your file. You have a right to these, they are yours. Then you take that file to your new oral surgeon so he can see what was actually done to you already. This is what I did for my daughter, that way the new dr. knows exactly what the previous dr. has found and done. My daughter had lower jaw bone infection, so I don't know how different it may be from the upper. Besides being in extreme constant pain, she developed a lump in jaw bone and swelling from infection that was on whole side of her face and neck. If the oral surgeon knows what osteomyelitis looks like on a panex, it is recognizable. But if he isn't familiar with it, he won't know what to look for. Luckily, the oral surgeon where we took our daughter, has dealt with osteomyelitis before and knew what to look for. My daughter's panex showed hairline fracture all along lower left jaw, stopping just past the chin area. It was starting to spread to right side. Fortunatly, the IV antibiotics stopped the infection before it could get to her right side. Her infectious disease dr. ordered bone scan(MRI) to see just where the infection was. I recommend you get your file from the previous dr. which will show exactly what procedures have been done to you. Make sure your new oral surgeon knows how to recognize osteomyelitis too. Good luck and God bless...Cindy