The truthiness of extracting wisdom teeth: James R. Carey

An excellent article was written yesterday October 3, 2011, titled “The truthiness of extracting wisdom teeth” by James R. Carey who is a Professor of Entomology at UC Davis  http://entomology.ucdavis.edu/faculty/facpage.cfm?id=carey The article is located at http://www.davisenterprise.com/opinion/opinion-columns/the-truthiness-of-extracting-wisdom-teeth/ and I think it is well worth a read for anyone considering wisdom teeth removal. He opens the article with “In this age of evidence-based health care, I was astonished to discover that the oral surgeon’s recommendation for removal of my 21-year-old daughter’s impacted wisdom teeth was not based on evidence, theory, logic or facts but rather on truthiness — the quality of being considered to be true because of what he wished.“ He goes on to say “Yet it is considered by dentists, oral surgeons and the majority of the public as “standard of care.” Neither I nor any family members or friends … Read more

Long Term Effects of Trigeminal Nerve Injuries from Dental Care

A study was published in the Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery titled “Long-Term Outcome of Trigeminal Nerve Injuries Related to Dental Treatment” by M. Anthony Pogrel, Ryan Jergensen, Eric Burgon, and Daniel Hulme. (vol. 69, pages 2284-2288, 2011) that looked at long-term effects of those who suffer from permanent nerve injury from dental treatment particularly involving the third molars or wisdom teeth. A total of 145 patients with 95 female and 50 male patients were involved in the study who had suffered a trigeminal nerve injury affecting either the inferior alveolar nerve or lingual nerve and in 8 cases both nerves. Nineteen patients (13.1 %) reported that their employment was affected, while 21  patients (14.5%)  reported problems with their relationship, 53  patients (36. 6%) reported depression, 55  patients (38%) reported problems speaking and pronouncing words correctly, 63  patients (43.5%) reported … Read more

How to Really Know if Wisdom Teeth Really Need to be Removed

Earlier today a article appeared in the Huffington Post titled “How To Know If Wisdom Teeth Really Need To Be Removed.” The author attempts to discuss some of the ongoing debate regarding extracting wisdom teeth. He talks about how doctors are fair and responsible. However, the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) continues to say on their webpage on wisdom teeth http://www.aaoms.org/wisdom_teeth.php It isn’t wise to wait until your wisdom teeth start to bother you. I would think a fair and responsible doctor would agree that the current scientific evidence should be presented to the patient of an elective procedure of teenagers and young adults such as described here http://www.teethremoval.com/controversy.html The author then refers to a study and says: “Interestingly, early removal of wisdom teeth (when the teeth have hardly any of the roots formed) has been shown … Read more

Which Caption Will You Choose: Wisdom Teeth To Remove or Not?

Flickr Image from http://www.flickr.com/photos/joebeone/5016877623/ and has a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License. This post is by no means realistic. These images are fake. However real tactics like these have actually been used before by the drug industry as a form of disease mongering although not applied to the wisdom teeth debate to my knowledge.

Bringing About Healthcare Change

There is a very interesting piece that appears in AAOMS Today in the May/June 2011 issue on page 16 titled “The power to change: Our specialty’s revolution” The article opens up with the following The power to effect change is one of the most distinctive characteristics of being human. Mankind has the ability to change our surroundings not just to survive, but also to thrive The article draws parallels to the foundations of the United States of America and the Declaration of Independence. Then the following appears midway in the article Our power lies in our own leadership in research and education. Our motivation is to prevent any other organization or entity from dictating to OMS what we can do, what we should do, and how we should do it. Then a donation is asked for to help support research … Read more