Is it possible to transplant teeth?

Like from cadavers or living donors to other people. I know there probably isn’t much call for it as false teeth can be made so easily, but it seems like something that could be done, as long as the transplant tooth is the right size for the donor and they have the same blood type. And would the transplanted false tooth have any feeling after a time (like the transplanted hands)? And would the recipient have to take anti-rejection drugs? I’m assuming they would since it is foreign tissue, but then, it’s not like a muscle or organ.

Thanks in advance! There really is nowhere else on the Internet you can ask this kind of question.

I would say it is possible without the body rejecting it, since it’s not a major organ. But all teeth are different sizes in different people as you stated. You would probably be best to just get a dental implant.

Oh, I don’t need one or anything. I was just curious.

On the same tip, would it be possible to transplant an eyeball? I know it wouldn’t see, but would a cadaver eye possibly track better than a false eye, leading to a better cosmetic result? What would have to go into hooking up the muscles and blood vessels? (I don’t need one of these either.)

How about hair? Aren’t they burying organ donors with good heads of hair that could go to help those of us who are more follicly challenged? The actual operation would be simple, since they already can transplant a person’s own hair from place to place on their head. Would the recipient need to take anti-rejection drugs?

Considering how many balding men there are, and how much some of them hate it, I’ve no doubt that there must be some that would consider transplants (from another donor).

I think I’ve just stumbled upon the solution to the whole saline vs silicone quandry. And I’ve never liked my eyelashes- so puny and short. My feet could be smaller.

Any doctors in the house want to explore this further? I’ll do the marketing, you do the cadaver transplants. Profit!

Teeth are alive, contrary to popular belief. There’s a pulp-like mass of arteries and nerves in the center of the tooth, which is the part that gets removed during a root canal (and the tooth is essentially dead, at that point.) So implanting a “live” tooth would definitely be at risk of rejection.

You could implant a “dead” tooth safely, but you’d have to check thousands of cadavers for a tooth that fits your mouth AND isn’t already rotten. It’s simply more convenient, and cheaper, to custom-build dental implants, which function just as well as regular teeth.

The optic nerve, I think, doesn’t grow back when severed (like the spinal cord). So eyeball transplants are right out. Besides…that’s just creepy!! :eek:

I’m just making wild-assed assumptions here, keep that in mind. Organ tissues tend to be somewhat uniform, the exception being blood type, and whatever other factors there are.

Organs that are “successfully” transplanted are far from perfectly functioning most times. If you get a heart transplant, you live longer, but not really longer.

Humans don’t regenerate a lot of tissue types. This would probably include nerve endings and root structures. Any transplant conceivable has been researched already, a few have worked.

I can’t imagine a “live” tooth accepting a new mouth, but it needs to be tried.

God bless creative biochemists. Also, molecular geneticists, and creative pharmacists. Endocrinologists, pathologists, osteologists, dentists, oncologists, and the like should also be thanked.

BTW. the idea that a foreign tooth can be assimilated in another person’s mouth, is very far from being possible. IMO, the connective tissue between the tooth and jaw is not that prone to attaching itself to things. It’s usually connected to begin with.

I think that teeth were probably the first things to be transplanted. If you take a look at they have a nice article on it.



If you need to keep the tooth alive, you need anti-rejection drugs.

Anti-rejection drugs are no picnic. They are expensive, risky, and have many side effects. One of the side effects is to put you into a condition like that of early AIDS: any infection can be a fatal infection. One dialysis patient I knew told me he wouldn’t have a transplant because he didn’t want to have to panic if he had a sniffle after taking a walk in the rain.

Nobody would do that for a tooth, because it isn’t essential to life. Heart, okay. Kidney, people can see. Pancreas, if they can get away from the nightmare of brittle diabetes, understandable. But a tooth?

No transplant tooth.

And if you don’t need to keep the tooth alive, you have to consider if non-renewable enamel and dead pulp is the best thing for the acid environment of the mouth.

May well be that current artificial substitutes are a better bet. The best thing about natural teeth (besides feeling in them) is how well they are rooted in the jaw and get along with the gums. If we could make dentures that rooted themselves in the jaw and never rubbed the gums, they might well last longer, look better, stay cleaner, and keep you healthier (infected teeth being a source of bacterial micro-emboli into the bloodstream, which have been linked to increased risk of strokes).

So who could have all that who wants a dead tooth?

Eh? As I remember, the survival record for a heart transplant patient is 24 years. (And I don’t know if that patient has even died yet—or at least, if it was from the transplant or not.)

I don’t know about hearts, but the median survival time after a lung transplant is 6 years. It’s not long enough that you’d go under the surgeon’s knife cheerfully, unless you were at death’s door.

But I’ve never heard that transplanted organs are damaged. The low life expectancy of transplant patients is down to either rejection or infection. Until one of these happens the new organs work just fine.

From the link:

The moral of this tale would be to thank God for unions. :smiley:

It’s not like they’d advertise the transplant of damaged organs.

Donor organs can be damaged by life (it would not be unusual for the lungs, kidneys, or liver of a middle-aged donor to have some minor damage from the usual wear and tear), during the “harvest” process, during prolonged transport (which is why speedy delivery is so essential), during implantation, and during rejection episodes. For the most part, the donor organs, despite accumulated damage, work better than the diseased organs leading to the transplant in the first place which is the justifcation for performing transplants. But I’d say it would be pretty rare for a cadaver organ to have NO damage whatsoever.

If I recall - kidney transplants from live donors tend to have more successful outcomes, probably because the transit time is so minimized.