Taking advantage of an unerupted third molar: a case report

ABSTRACT Introduction: Treatments with dental surgery seek to displace tooth to the correct position within the dental arch. Objective: To report a clinical case that took advantage of an unerupted third molar. Case history: A male patient, 18 years of age, was referred by his dentist to evaluate the third molars. The clinical exam revealed no visible lower third molars. The computed tomography (CT) exam showed the presence of a supernumerary tooth in the region of the mandibular ramus, on the left side, and impaction of the third molar, which was causing root resorption on the second molar, thus making it impossible to remain in the buccal cavity. The preferred option, therefore, was to remove both second molar and the supernumerary tooth, in addition to attaching a device to the third molar during surgery for further traction. Results: After 12 months, the third molar reached the proper position. Conclusion: When a mandibular second permanent molar shows an atypical root resorption, an impacted third molar can effectively substitute the tooth by using an appropriate orthodontic-surgical approach.