The effect of gelfoam soaked in dexamethasone on swelling, bleeding, and pain after third molars of mandible surgery

Document Type : Original Article


1 Assistant Professor, Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Faculty of Dentistry, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran.

2 Assistant Professor, Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology, Faculty of Dentistry, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran.

3 Faculty of Dentistry, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran.


Background and Objectives: Surgery on the lower impacted third molar usually involves trauma in the connective tissue area, leading to inflammatory sequelae including pain and swelling during the immediate post-operative phase. This study aimed to investigate the effectiveness of gelfoam soaked in dexamethasone on bleeding, swelling and pain control after mandibular third molar surgery.
Subjects and Methods: This is a controlled single-blind split-mouth study conducted on 25 patients requiring surgical removal of bilateral mandibular impacted third molar. All the patients underwent routine dental extractions of mandibular molar teeth. In the intervention group (right side), gelfoam soaked in dexamethasone (8 mg) was placed into the extraction socket postoperatively and the control group (left side) received no drug. The intensity of pain, swelling and bleeding was evaluated based on visual analog scale (VAS) on the first, third and sixth day after surgery.
Results: The pain and swelling scores was not significantly different on the first, third and sixth postoperative day between the control and study groups (P>0.05). There was a significant reduction in bleeding on the third postoperative day in the study group compare to control (P=0.007), but in the first and sixth day difference between the control and study group was not significantly different (P=0.311 and P=1.000 respectively).
Conclusion: Placing the Gelfoam soaked in dexamethasone into the extraction site has no efficacy on reduction of postoperative pain and swelling, and therefore we don’t recommend this treatment modality for reduction of postoperative sequelae.


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