A dental abscess, or tooth abscess, is an accumulation of pus that forms inside the teeth or gums. The abscess typically originates from a bacterial infection, often one that has accumulated in the soft pulp of the tooth. Close to 45,750 Americans will be diagnosed with oral or Tooth abscess a year. It will cause over 8,00 deaths, killing roughly 1 person per year, 24 hours per day. Of those 45,750 newly diagnosed individuals, only slightly more than half will be alive in 5 years. Diagnosis of a tooth abscess is collectively determined by (1) signs and symptoms reported by the patient, (2) exam and tests that are performed by the dentist, and (3) what is visualized with dental radiographs (X-rays).
Future research deals with determination of various host and environmental factors that put an individual at risk for development of dental abscess. Increased reliance on novel molecular techniques has enriched our knowledge of the diverse polymicrobial collection that constitutes a dental abscess