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A 35-year-old male asked:

hello, i have an approximately 8 year old tooth abscess that has not been treated. should i go to the dentist first, or to the er?

3 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Al Hegab
Dr. Al Hegabanswered
Allergy and Immunology 40 years experience
Dentist first: So long you don't have symptoms that can't wait until you see your dentist, good luck
Dr. James Ferguson
Pediatrics 46 years experience
You decide: You state you have lived with it for 8 years & not tended to it. The ER is full of acute trauma victims, heart attacks, gunshot wounds and the like. If you do go, expect to be sent to the waiting for hours while anyone with an urgent need is seen before you.Patients are seen in order of need, not based on time of arrival.
Dr. Arnold Malerman
Orthodontics 53 years experience
Abscess: An abscess is a virulent infection that can easily overcome the body's defense mechanisms. It requires immediate Dental treatment. Dentist can provide immediate treatment or appropriate referral. Unless ER has Dental Staff, they can only medicate you and refer you to a Dentist.

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Last updated Dec 9, 2017

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