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ABSTRACT BACKGROUND: With the advent of novel devices in surgery such as LASER and Electro surgery, surgical procedures in medicine and dentistry have become simpler. These devices offers the potential to reduce the intraoperative and postoperative bleeding, optimizes the healing and may reduce the healing time as well as the surgical complexity of the procedure. However, these devices are found to produce hazardous smoke during the procedure which is referred to as surgical smoke. OBJECTIVES: The objective of this literature review is to identify the potential hazards of surgical smoke in dentistry and also to explain in brief about the methods of reducing smoke production in the operatory and thus reducing the health hazards it may cause. METHODS: Articles pertaining to the key words “Surgical smoke”, “surgical plume”, “electrocautery smoke” and “laser smoke” were searched in MEDLINE database of references and abstracts on life sciences and biomedical topics. 37 articles (including reviews) were collected and analyzed for relevant information, segregated and the inferences were gathered into a structured literature review. RESULTS: The available evidences on surgical smoke in the medical and dental literature showed that surgical smoke poses a definitive threat to the health of the operator and the staff in the operating room. The electrocautery smoke seemed to produce more harmful emissions compared to the laser plumes. CONCLUSION: It can be concluded that dentists and the assisting staff should be educated about the potential risks of surgical smoke. The operating room should be equipped with proper evacuation system. Usage of respirators should be made mandatory so that both the patient as well as the operator should be at minimal risk from the emissions that are released during any procedures.