What Is an Osseous Surgery, and Why Is It Performed?

An osseous surgery is a periodontic procedure that creates a shallower tooth pocket that discourages collection and growth of bacteria and is easier for the patient to keep clean, states Northeast Peridodontal Associates. The procedure allows the patient to retain the tooth when other treatments have not been effective.

Osseous surgeries reshape and smooth the bone affected by the pocket, building a shallower space that is less hospitable to bacteria than the larger pocket was. The procedure includes a complete cleaning of the surface of the root, as stated by Northeast Periodontal Associates.

The first step in an osseous procedure is to find out which teeth need the surgery, according to Northeast Periodontal Associates. If the pocket surrounding the tooth has a depth of 4 millimeters or greater, surgery is necessary. Other symptoms include red, swollen gums that bleed easily after contact. The periodontist makes an incision into the gum tissue surrounding the area needing treatment, lifting the gum off the tooth and bone. This provides access to the root of the tooth and the bone so that the periodontist can clean the root thoroughly. After smoothing the bone surface, the periodontist trims and stitches the gum tissue into place. Postsurgical treatment includes a pain medicine prescription and removal or dissolution of the stitches within a week to 10 days.