Purpose: Our objective was to study whether the placement of intra-alveolar tetracycline prevents dry sockets or improves the postoperative period.
Patients and methods: A comparative clinical study of the surgical removal of 200 impacted mandibular third molars is made, with particular reference to postextraction pain, inflammation, trismus, and the incidence of dry socket. In 50% of these cases, a pharmacologic preparation that includes tetracycline was placed in the socket after removal of the impacted molar.
Results: Dry socket was diagnosed in 4 cases (2%), with no relation to intra-alveolar tetracycline placement being observed. The patients who were administered intra-alveolar tetracycline had less pain and trismus and consumed fewer analgesics than the patients who received no such treatment, although statistical significance was not reached.
Conclusions: The intra-alveolar placement of tetracycline compound after the surgical removal of impacted mandibular third molars did not affect the incidence of dry socket.