Frequently Asked Questions

highly specialized type of dental care

You have been referred to an Endodontist, a dentist who specializes in endodontic (root canal) therapy. Endodontics is a highly specialized type of dental care developed to save teeth. We, at Dothan Endodontics, are dedicated to providing you the highest quality of endodontic care. The latest proven clinical techniques are used with skill and precision. We understand that you may be apprehensive about your endodontic treatment. We will make every effort to ensure that your visit is as comfortable as possible and becomes a good dental experience. We seek to create an atmosphere of understanding, open communications and mutual respect. Please do not hesitate to ask questions or offer suggestions.

Dr. Lee Van Carroll and the staff of Dothan Endodontics appreciate the trust you have placed in us by selecting our office for your diagnostic and endodontic needs. Again, welcome.


Endodontics, sometimes referred to as root canal therapy, is the removal of the soft center or nerve tissue from the inside of the tooth. This tissue, called the pulp, can become diseased, thereby causing pain and/or infection. The cure for such a pulp problem follows three basic steps:

      1. First, the pulp is entered through a small opening made in the chewing surface of the tooth.
      2. Then, the pulp is removed and the entire root canal space is cleaned, shaped and sterilized.
      3. Finally, the root canal is sealed with a rubber-like material called gutta-percha.

Usually at least three or four x-rays are required during treatment to insure that every step is performed correctly. The final x-ray taken will be sent to your referring dentist.


Root canal therapy is usually done in one visit depending on the complexity of the case. Some cases may require two visits. Each visit generally lasts between 1 – 1 ½ hours.


When root canal therapy is complete, you must return to your dentist for the permanent restoration of your tooth. Your dentist will decide what type of restoration is required. Usually a cap or crown is required to protect the remaining tooth structure. At times, all that is needed after root canal therapy is a small filling.


Yes! The only real alternative to having root canal therapy is to have the tooth extracted. To have a tooth extracted without replacement can result in a loss of chewing ability and other teeth adjacent to the missing tooth might drift changing your “bite”. A false tooth to replace the missing tooth is weaker than a natural tooth. Adjacent teeth may be affected if a bridge is constructed, and a bridge is more difficult to keep clean than natural teeth. In addition, a replacement bridge would probably cost more than endodontic treatment and a permanent restoration.


We will recommend treatment only when we believe it will be successful. More than 95% of routine cases respond to the treatment methods used in this office. Due to complications, some teeth pose a greater than normal chance of not responding to treatment, even though endodontic therapy is still required. These cases may require more than one procedure. In a few cases, no amount of treatment will produce satisfactory results. We can usually inform you before treatment if your tooth is of the high risk type.


Fees for root canal therapy are generally determined by the number of canals involved and the complexity of the situation. Pre-existing dental conditions which increase treatment complexity and cost can often be predicted. You will be informed of the fee range before treatment is started.

Some patients prefer to have a consultation prior to treatment to have a chance to meet us and discuss their concerns. Sometimes, diagnostic procedures are needed simply to advise patients if root canal therapy is needed at all, or if their specific tooth will respond to therapy. Some procedures such as endodontic re-treatment or an apicoectomy (endodontic surgery) requires a thorough discussion of the treatment options and prognosis before therapy can be initiated. The best patient is an educated one. We are always happy to answer all your patient questions prior to starting any procedure.


The fee for root canal therapy includes:

  • Local anesthetics
  • All necessary treatment x-rays
  • Instrumentation and cleaning of root canal(s)
  • Filling of root canal(s)
  • Placement of a temporary restoration
  • Filling in dental insurance forms
  • Reports to your general dentist
  • Prescriptions (not dispensing of medications)

Payment for services is expected at the time of treatment. Our treatment is provided on a fee for services basis, and fees are the same for all patients, whether or not they have dental insurance. For your convenience, we accept MasterCard, Visa, Discover, American Express, cash, or personal checks.

We are a preferred provider for Delta Dental, Southland National, and BC/BS of AL. All others will be required to pay 50% of the fee at time of service. We will file your insurance and what is not paid will be billed to the patient. If the insurance company over pays we will send you a check.

Contact Our Office 

220 Healthwest Dr., Ste 1
Dothan, AL 36303
(334) 793 - 7687

Call: 334.793.7687

Fax: 334.793.0067

Working Hours

Monday-Thursday 6am-2:30pm


220-1 Healthwest Drive
Dothan, AL 36303