surgical interventions


What is devitalization?

Devitalization is a surgical procedure that involves the destruction and subsequent removal of the pulp of a tooth; it is performed when this tissue, rich in nerve endings and blood vessels, is irretrievably compromised by extensive cariogenic processes, trauma or other severe dental disorders. Devitalization also includes the sealing (filling) of the pulp canal with special cements and biocompatible materials, such as to prevent any possible bacterial diffusion in the surrounding sites.

Devitalization - also called root canal treatment - is a rescue operation for the tooth as it excludes its extraction.

A little dental anatomy to understand

The dental pulp is the most internal part of a tooth, made up of blood vessels (arterioles and venules), nerves and special cells - called odontoblasts - used for the production of dentin. The dental pulp extends from the crown of the tooth (the visible white part) to the tip of the roots. The channel within the root is called the root canal .

Dental pulp is necessary for the tooth for its correct growth. However, once developed, the tooth can remain in place even in the absence of pulp, fully performing its masticatory function.

As mentioned, the devitalization does not involve the extraction of the tooth because this can "live" even without its pulp. However, after surgery, it is necessary to reconstruct the crown because the tooth - deprived of its vital pulp - becomes more fragile and more prone to fractures or traumas.


A less drastic alternative to tooth extraction, devitalization is indicated in the following circumstances:

  • Very extensive and deep caries (devitalization is indicated for cariogenic processes that cannot be treated by simple obturation)
  • Severe dental trauma
  • Deep inflammation of the tooth pulp (severe pulpitis)
  • (Some) Dental abscesses
  • Seriously chipped tooth
  • Teeth breakage
  • Correction of a poorly managed dental procedure
  • Teeth that require encapsulation

In the cases just reported, the patient can experience bacterial infections, which in turn can trigger even more critical injuries, such as granuloma, cysts and dental abscess. To avoid these complications, there are two solutions: devitalization or tooth extraction.

In the presence of a strong and unstoppable toothache, especially if accompanied by swelling, pain during chewing and hypersensitivity to hot and cold, a visit to the dentist is strongly recommended. In fact, these symptoms can be a lighted sign of a deep cariogenic process (which has reached the pulp) or of a severe pulp infection. Only when diagnosed early, these disorders can be resolved by a devitalization procedure. If the infection is too deep and irreversible, the only solution is tooth extraction.

Who does it run from?

Devitalization is a delicate intervention; therefore, it must be performed exclusively by competent and specialized personnel. Endodontists are dentists (dentists) who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of infections or trauma to the pulp of the tooth. For this reason, devitalization is also called endodontic treatment .


Today, devitalization is an almost painless endodontic procedure, always performed under local anesthesia. Thanks to the technological refinement of anesthetic procedures, devitalization is no more painful than a common filling.

Only in the days immediately following the operation, the tooth may be more sensitive to temperature changes or to certain foods (especially sugary and sticky ones like jam and honey).


The devitalization procedure is not cheap, and the cost varies according to the severity of the trauma / caries and the location of the tooth. In general, the price requested for the devitalization of a tooth ranges from 100 to 350 euros.

Devitalization: execution of the intervention and risks ยป