One of the daily challenges facing the oral or maxillofacial surgeon is the therapeutic management of asymptomatic and disease free third molars.
To date, there has been a lack of conclusive information, with problems in the interpretation of recent literature as well as different views among professionals regarding whether to perform an extraction or maintain active surveillance.
The aim of this paper is to review recent literature regarding the therapeutic decisions in these cases; discuss aspects of consensus and controversies; and look for scientific evidence to justify the prophylactic extraction of the third molar.
Controversy over the optimal therapeutic management of an asymptomatic third molar, free of disease continues today.
► See also: DENTAL ANESTHESIA : Mandibular Nerve Block Technique
This review found no scientific evidence to justify the prophylactic extraction of third molars.
Much more scientific evidence, as well as the design of randomised clinical studies to compare the short- and long-term active surveillance and extraction of third molars is needed.
The therapeutic approach for symptomatic third molars (3Ms) or with pathology is simple, but there is controversy over whether to perform extraction or surveillance of asymptomatic and pathology-free 3Ms.
Historically, the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) recommends the extraction of 3Ms before the patient reaches adulthood.
García-Riart Monzón, M. / Paredes Rodríguez, VM. / Reininger, D. / Rodríguez-Grandjean García-Zabarte, A. / Guisado Moya, B / López-Quiles, J