What is the Prevalence of Patients with Asymptomatic, Disease-Free Third Molars (Wisdom Teeth)

An interesting article titled “How Many Patients Have Third Molars and How Many Have One or More Asymptomatic, Disease-Free Third Molars?” appears in the September 2012, supplement 1. (vol. 70, issue 9) of the Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery written by Thomas B. Dodson, DMD, MPH (pg. S4-S7). The article seems to attempt to arrive at an answer to the question of how many patients really have a wisdom tooth (third molar) that is not causing problems and that has no disease. In the article Dr. Dodson recommends that patients are divided into 4 different categories when having their wisdom teeth evaluated. symptomatic, disease present (based on history and radiological examination) symptomatic, disease absent (includes teething and vague pain symptoms unrelated to wisdom tooth) asymptomatic, disease present (disease is evident from radiological findings or clinical exam but not patient … Read more

Upcoming Changes to JOMS and AAOMS in 2014

I wanted to update readers on some of the upcoming changes which will be taking place in the world of oral and maxillofacial surgery in 2014. The first change has to deal with JOMS (Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery). These updates are addressed in the editorial in the September 2013, JOMS, by  James Hupp titled, “The Journal’s Performance and Upcoming New Features” (J Oral Maxillofac Surg., vol. 71, pp. 1481-1483, 2013). In brief, JOMS has managed to decrease the time it takes to get accepted in the journal from 12 to 18 months to just 3 to 6 months. This improves the time for new updates to permeate throughout the field. Furthermore, when articles are accepted they are available rapidly for viewing online (although editing still has to occur). Several interesting developments are occurring: A) Soon, AAOMS Press Releases … Read more

Marketing the Services of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons

An interesting article appears in the Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery titled “Marketing—Preparing the Soil for Success” by James Hupp vol. 71, pp. 1-2, 2013. The article discusses how the general public does not know much about the possible health care services that an oral and maxillofacial surgeon can provide. It also is a bit of a reality check of how health care is practiced in the United States article. The article talks about a new marketing initiative and says “To me, this represents the association’s wish to start a new time of planning and laying the groundwork for a new season of better educated consumers seeking our care.” The author discusses how the image of oral and maxillofacial surgeons by the general public is not that well understood. Most would know that they remove teeth and have much … Read more

Improving Patient Safety: Updates on Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

In a recent blog post I discussed how a few new videos have appeared in recent months related to oral and maxillofacial surgery Videos Related to Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. The American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) has also updated several sections of their website in the last year or so. They now have a section titled Orthodontics and Oral Surgery where they have videos related to showcasing various techniques that oral and maxillofacial surgeons and orthodontists perform. In addition they have updated and written a new page titled “Culture of Safety“. The page is a welcome addition and discusses how safety is the number one priority in the oral and maxillofacial surgery office. Now I wanted to take a moment to respond to this page and some other developments I have seen lately across the blogosphere. 1) … Read more

Unnecessary Medical Care and Over Used Tests: The Choosing Wisely Campaign

The Choosing Wisely Campaign is an initiative which I believe I first heard about in late 2010 launched by the ACR (American College of Radiation as the Imaging Wisely Campaign) The Imagely Wisely Campaign was designed to have people aware of the fact that certain medical imaging tests such as CT exams were sometimes over used and did not always have to be used in some instances. It seems that the Choosing Wisely Campaign was launched by the ABIM Foundation which is an organization designed to advance medical professionalism to improve patient care. In April 2012 the Choosing Wisely Campaign released some lists of tests and procedures commonly done in 9 medical professions that should be questioned.  In February 2013 an additional 18 lists of tests or procedures were released. The press release is located at http://www.choosingwisely.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/021513_CW-Phase-II-Press-Release-FINAL.pdf On the website … Read more