3rd Time's A Charm! Gum Graft Surgery Is Agony!

I am on day 3 of recovery for the gingiva graft surgery using my palate as a donor.

I understand that everyone's experience is different with gum graft surgery. This is my 3rd time for this procedure in 3 years. I'll give you the run down over the last 3 years:

1st attempt (with Alloderm): I had 6 teeth in total grafted upper and lower left jaw. I was knocked out cold. I didn't feel anything for the first day - but in the days following, I developed a really bad infection as I was not given penicillin for potential infection. I was in a fair amount of pain!

2nd attempt (with Alloderm): I had 6 teeth in total grafted upper and lower right. I was knocked out cold. HEALING WAS A BREEZE! I was given antibiotics to ward off any potential infection, and healing time was pretty fast.

Fast forward 3 years later, and I'm told I need gum graft surgery AGAIN, because the "Alloderm" did not 'take'. This time it would only be for 2 teeth in total upper and lower left (kinda makes sense, since this was the side that I had the infection on). However, the only difference would be, is that the donor tissue would come from my hard palate. While I didn't like this idea to begin with (which is why I had initially opted for the Alloderm because I have zero tolerance for extreme pain), I was told by my dentist that my own tissue would have a better chance at adhering to my OWN gums rather than Alloderm. OK....*sigh* FINE....let's get this done and over with.

I am currently on Day 3 of healing, and childbirth is like peeling off a bandaid compared to this pain! I feel like someone KICKED ME in the roof of my mouth with HOT SPIKED METAL. During Day 1, I felt so nauseated from literally swallowing quarts of blood that I had lost, which is disgusting in itself. I was not given any 'mouth guard' or any patch. Just stitches! I have stitches in the left side roof of my mouth and if it isn't throbbing, I get seering 'lighting bolt' pain through the left side of my face. The Tyenol 3 just makes me feel HIGH. Oh and let's not forget the gargantuan migraine I had which felt like 100000 Hiroshima bombs going off in my head and nothing would help it, until I popped a PERK! That just made me so high that I passed out....my migraine is gone today, but I still get the occasional "lightening shock" pain in the side of my face. Not that I know what its like to be struck by lightening, but if this is it...oh holy hell.

But apparently the worst is over according to my dentist after I called him today desperate for answers. Apparently this is also NORMAL for some people! WHAT!?!?! He said that by Day 4 and onward I should start to feel a bit better.

But don't let my 3rd experience scare you. I just have an extremely low tolerance for pain.

I'm so sick of soup, Jello and Kraft Dinner.....*sigh*
CherylP76 CherylP76
31-35, F
3 Responses Jul 23, 2011

I just had this gum graft done last Thurs., I wished I had known about the excruciating pain that comes along with this. I have high tolerance for pain. I rarely use any pain killer for most procedures. I broke my wrist; no pain meds to have it resset. Many other situations as well.<br />
<br />
But this had really put me over the cliff. After 6 nights of only 5/6 hrs of sleep and pain, I'm over it. I need some stronger meds. I was given tylenol 3 (didn't even touch the pain) and ibuprophen 800mg., helped very little. I'm asking for some stronger meds today. This is pain like I have NEVER felt. Hard to even put into words.<br />
<br />
Wll comment later when I return. Apt at 945am today. YEAH<br />
<br />

Its been 2 months since the surgery and all is healed well, except for one strange thing. The roof of my mouth feels 'protruded'. Its difficult to put into words, but if I could describe it this way it would be this: The right side of the roof of my mouth feels' normal'. As it did before. The LEFT side, where they took the graft, the tissue is completely healed and smooth, but the left side of the roof of my mouth feels as if it 'sticks out more'.<br />
<br />
So now, I can feel my tastebuds, and little 'soft lumps' at the back of my throat - EACH AND EVERY TIME I SWALLOW! I feels like I'm swallowing little nodules! I *KNOW* the surgery is to blame for this!<br />
<br />
It's not a big deal by 'worry' standards, but it doesn't feel right to me. As a result, I keep getting 'thrush' in my mouth because of the pH imbalance, and then to always be conscious that I am 'swallowing' something is really disheartening!<br />
<br />
Has anyone else had this experience?

Hello, I'm on day 5 of my graft surgey. I know your pain, i have a huge infection. my Dr "lost" her cell phone over the weekend. I ended up in the emergency department. On antibiotics and T#3's. She said infection is rare...yeah right! All this for one receding tooth! Still have my fingers crossed that the graft will stick, but it's unlikely. The donor site on the roof of my mouth is healing, but i still have major swelling on my lower left jaw. I would reccomend going on antibiotics at the time of surgery. the infection hit hard and fast (the second day). Hope your graft heals and you don't have to go through this pain again!