Central Houston Animal Hospital patient case study
Getting to the root of the problem: CHAH Diagnostics
Bella’s Story: Bella is a 4-year-old female spayed Maltese mix that presented to Central Houston Animal Hospital with a recurring wound on her left cheek. At the first visit, a small puncture wound was suspected. The wound was clipped and cleaned, topical antibiotics, and oral anti-inflammatories were prescribed. The wound began to scab over and appeared to be healing well. Several weeks went by and unfortunately, the wound appeared again. A tooth root abscess was suspected and a dental cleaning with full dental radiographs was recommended. Bella’s mom was nervous about anesthesia, so our team sat down with her and discussed the benefits of addressing dental disease and investigating this non-healing wound. Shortly thereafter, Bella had a dental cleaning and her dental radiographs revealed an abscess at the root tip of the left lower molar; as presented in the picture. The associated tooth was surgically extracted, Bella recovered well, her pain and inflammation were managed, and her wound has since completely healed!
How can this be with generally healthy teeth in a young dog? Looks aren’t everything! A tooth may look healthy, but bacteria can invade the pulp chamber and spread through the bottom of the tooth into the surrounding bone. With Bella, the tooth root abscess attempted to exit the body and did so by draining through the skin of her cheek. We were so happy to relieve Bella’s pain and discomfort and fix the “root” of her problem! One of the many reasons routine dental cleanings with full mouth radiographs are so important in our furry friends.