Faculty of Orthodontics, College of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Ulster, 32-34 Colmore Circus, Birmingham, United Kingdom
The use of fixed retainers at the end of a course of orthodontic treatment has become standard practice. The main complication that can occur with fixed retainers is the detachment of the wire from one or more teeth. A less common complication is unwanted tooth movement.
This article presents a patient with extreme tooth movement associated with a mandibular fixed retainer. Ten years after orthodontic treatment, a 26-year-old male sought treatment for post-orthodontic movement of the mandibular anterior six teeth. Despite the fixed retainer still being attached to all teeth, the apex of the right canine was completed avulsed labially. Severe labial recession was also present on the left lateral incisor. The canine was extracted, and the fixed retainer was removed. Significant root resorption identified on a panoramic radiograph contraindicated any further extensive orthodontic intervention.
This case highlights that clinicians and patients should be aware of this rare but serious complication.