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Bruised nerve due to wisdom tooth extraction

Hi Dr Kirsch,
I've emailed you a couple of times, and hoping I can ask a further question on my mom's injury.
She had a wisdom tooth extraction in March, and has had numbness in her tongue ever since.  She just had a CT scan done to rule out any other factors (ie tumors), and that is fine.  This numbness is really causing her tremendous anxiety.  She has told her oral surgeon this, and on Thursday when she visited his comment was that he is "optimistic" that the feeling will return, and to "keep the faith".  He gave her an appointment with a neurologist and some pain killers.  Supposedly this neurologist can prescribe something to help "build the nerves".  
He did say it looks like there has been some "movement", but the nerve is "bruised".  She has so much trouble coping with this....has trouble eating, her tongue feels like its sore at the back, and she describes when she talks, it is like her tongue is taking up all the space in her mouth.
Could you give me an opinion on this?  Is there anything in the meantime she can do to relieve this discomfort?  I really am worried for her if this doesnt go away.
Thanks again Dr Kirsch for your time and advice,
Mary
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595141 tn?1239971814
My daughter had all 4 wisdom teeth out and now her bottom lip is numb its been 2 months, should she go to another doctor
Helpful - 1
373693 tn?1324485502
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
Mary,

Nerve injury to the tongue following wisdom tooth is a well known risk of the surgery.  It may be unavoidable and can occur even when the surgery is done correctly.  Less than 1% of those cases are permanent.

Nerves heal very slowly especially in patients over 30 yrs. old.  There are medications such as Neurontin and Tegretol which can relieve some of the unpleasant sensations and pain.  Patients need to be monitored closely while taking these drugs.  In some rare cases surgery is necessary to repair the nerve.

I suggest you obtain a second opinion from a Board Certified Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon who is familiar with the treatment of Trigeminal Nerve injuries.  I believe they would treat more cases then a general neurologist.

Information contained within this reply is intended solely for general educational purposes and is not intended nor implied to be a medical diagnosis or treatment recommendation.  This is not a substitute for professional medical advice relative to your specific medical condition or question. Always seek the advice of your own doctor for medical condition. Only your doctor can provide specific diagnoses and therapies.
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Avatar universal
A related discussion, Tooth extraction was started.
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A related discussion, Numbness post wisdom tooth extraction was started.
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