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The extraction of third molars is a common task carried out at dental/surgery clinics. Postoperative pain is one of the two most common complications of this surgery, along with dry socket. Knowledge of the frequent risk factors of this complication is useful in determining high-risk patients, planning treatment, and preparing the patients mentally. Since the risk factors for postoperative pain have never been summarized before while the risk factors for dry socket have been highly debated, this report summarizes the literature regarding the common predictors of postextraction pain. Except for sur-gical difficultyand the surgeon’s experience, the influencesof other risk factors (age, gender and oral contraceptive use) were rather inconclusive. The case of a female gender or oral contraceptive effect might mainly be associated with estrogen levels (when it comes to dry socket), which can differ considerably from case to case. Improvement in and unificationof statistical and diagnostic methods seem necessary. In addition, each risk factor was actually a combination of various independent variables, which should instead be targeted in more comprehensive studies.
Keywords: Pain, Risk factors, Third molar, Extraction