Dental Health Topics

Sub-Epithelial Connective Tissue (SECT) Graft Procedure -Dental Procedure Code Description

“Grafting” is a process whereby a portion of tissue is taken from one area of the body and placed in another. Types of grafts include bone, skin, vascular and ligament. This dental procedure code refers to the type of grafting that takes tissue from within the mouth to cover teeth with receding gums.
A sub-epithelial (meaning “below the skin”) connective tissue graft (CT graft) is one of four tissue grafts performed to correct hum tissue loss. The other types include free gingival grafts, pedical grafts and pinhole surgery technique (PST). The CT graft is the most common among the four, and is called “sub-epithelial” because the tissue removed does not include the superficial epithelium.”
In this dental procedure code description, the term “donor site” represents the place in the mouth from which the tissue is removed, and the “recipient site” represents the place where the tissue is eventually placed.
To begin this procedure, the recipient site is prepared first by root planning the tooth that will be covered with the graft. Once the tooth is thoroughly cleansed, an incision (or series of incisions) is made in the area surrounding the recipient site in preparation for the eventual placement of the graft. A second incision (or series of incisions) is made at the donor site – often the maxillary tuberosity region of the mouth (where wisdom teeth erupt).
Once a flap has been made, exposing the underlying tissues at the donor site, your doctor/surgeon would remove (harvest) a portion of this tissue and place it within the recipient site so that it covers the area of the tooth that needs a greater degree of tissue coverage. Then, the graft itself and the surrounding gum tissue are sutured in place
The exposed flap at the donor site is also sutured, and both sites are covered with a periodontal dressing to promote healing.  A future return to the office is often required to remove sutures, and a post-operative follow-up some 4-6 weeks later is often recommended to review the status of the graft.