Third Molar Extraction And Paranasal Sinus Related Side Effects

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Ian C. Clapp (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:
Gregory Anoufriev

Abstract: Third molar extraction is one of the most commonly performed dental surgeries in the world. Despite the routine nature of the procedure, some have questioned the benefits of prophylactic third molar extraction, and many potential long-term side effects of such extractions have not been widely studied. Herein, it was hypothesized that the patterns of bone loss and remodeling inferior to the maxillary sinuses caused by the extraction of the third molars could lead to increased rates of sinus-related maladies such as seasonal allergies, non-migraine headaches, and sinus infections. An online survey regarding third molar extraction and the aforementioned sinus-related symptoms was distributed to 1,000 Appalachian State University undergraduate email addresses, and 78 completed responses were received and analyzed. No significant correlation (with a cutoff of p>0.05) between the rates of sinus infections, non-migraine headaches, or seasonal allergies and the extraction of the third molars was observed (p=0.57, p=0.57, and p=0.62, respectively). Among those surveyed, the most common motives for undergoing third molar extraction were prophylactic extractions (45%) or concerns of overcrowding (24%). Additional analysis of demographic data from the survey revealed no correlation between sex or vegetarian diets and rates of third molar extraction, nor between sex and rates of third molar agenesis (p=0.26, p=0.83, and p=0.26, respectively). Although these results show no correlation between the sinus-related symptoms of interest and third molar extraction within the surveyed population, further research into the extent and effects of bone loss and remodeling, especially among older populations, is recommended. Additionally, the lack of correlation between sex or diet and extraction rates found in this data brings the applicability of some hypotheses regarding the causes of difficulties with third molar eruption in modern humans within the surveyed population into question.

Additional Information

Honors Project
Clapp, I. (2019). Third Molar Extraction And Paranasal Sinus Related Side Effects. Unpublished Honors Thesis. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC.
Language: English
Date: 2019
Wisdom Teeth, Third Molars, Paranasal Sinuses, Dental, Sinusitis

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