Search the Health Library
Get the facts on diseases, conditions, tests and procedures.
I Want To...
I Want To...
Find Research Faculty
Enter the last name, specialty or keyword for your search below.
School of Medicine
I Want to...
Preparing for Pre-surgical Dental Evaluation
If you are having surgery, your surgeon may have asked you to see us for a pre-surgical dental evaluation.
Why do I need a pre-surgical dental evaluation?
Your surgeon wants us to make sure of your oral health, including the stability of your teeth and jaw for surgery. During surgery, your will probably have a breathing tube down your throat. Your surgeon wants to make sure no teeth will be damaged when the breathing tube is inserted and that your jaw can remain open for the entire period of the surgery.
Your dentists will also ensure there are no active infections in the oral cavity, such as abscesses or acute periodontal disease. Bacteria from the oral cavity can travel to the surgery site and complicate healing. If you are a potential organ recipient, your physicians will want to give you immunosuppressant drugs before surgery. Any dental abscess can cause an infection that the patient’s immune system will no longer be able to contain.
What should I expect from the exam?
One of our dentists will:
- Examine your teeth and make sure none are loose.
- Examine your mouth and the overall health of your jaw.
- Look for active lesions, periodontal disease, chronic or acute abscesses.
- Review your general medical history. This pre-surgical dental evaluation is similar to a new patient evaluation