Third Molar Surgery 2nd Edition - L0791


About Course #L0791

Release Date: July 30, 2013

Review Date: November 3, 2016

Expiration Date: November 2, 2019

Treatment philosophy toward extraction of third molars (wisdom teeth) varies in different developed countries. It ranges from observation in many countries in Europe to a prophylactic removal approach in the United States. A more proactive stance on often asymptomatic wisdom teeth extraction takes into consideration chronic inflammation that is related to the impacted wisdom teeth and its influence on the patient's overall health; age of the patient; relative ease of early extraction (before full root development); difficulty of removal/type of impaction; and proximity to the inferior alveolar nerve, lingual nerve, and maxillary sinus. Such preventive surgical treatment can be done under local anesthesia, oral sedation with or without nitrous oxide inhalation sedation or intravenous sedation, with the level of sedation corresponding to the nature of the surgery and the patient's level of anxiety about the procedure.

This basic-level course provides a review of the classification of impactions of third molars and the common surgical instruments and techniques employed for the extraction of impacted wisdom teeth. No surgical technique is without the potential for complications, and the most serious complications resulting from the extraction of wisdom teeth involve trauma to the inferior alveolar or lingual nerves, which can result in temporary or permanent adverse neurosensory changes. Using the empiric information presented in this course about impacted wisdom teeth, the potential difficulty of their extraction, and postsurgical complications, clinicians can determine whether their surgical expertise is at a high enough level for the extraction of an impacted wisdom tooth or if they should refer such patients to an oral surgeon.

AGD Subject Code: 310

Course Objectives

  • Explain the varied clinical presentations of third molars.
  • Cite the classification and surgical management of third molars.
  • List the risks and complications of third molar extractions.
  • Describe the treatment modalities and specific surgical techniques available for third molar surgery.
  • Outline established criteria for third molar removal in the United States.
  • List the benefits of a preventive strategy in relation to third molars.

Western Schools designates this activity for 2 continuing education credits.


Len Tolstunov, DDS,

Course Disclosures

  • Courses must be completed on or before the expiration date noted in the course description above.
  • You must score 75% or higher on the final exam and complete the course evaluation to pass this course and receive a certificate of completion.
  • Through our review processes, Western Schools ensures that the course content is presented in a balanced, unbiased manner and is free from commercial influence. It is Western Schools' policy not to accept commercial support.
  • All persons involved in the planning and development of this course have disclosed no relevant financial relationships or other conflicts of interest related to the course content.
  • There are no prerequisites for this course.

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