An t i - Ag i ng DENT I STRY
Dr. Kourosh Maddahi
C O S M E T I C & A N T I - A G I N G D E N T I S T R Y
From Tragedy to Triumph
A LOOK AT A CHALLENGING CASE
Sometimes challenging cases are born out of tragic circumstances. This was the situation with one patient, Jessica, who experienced significant and horrific trauma, and a long road to recovery. Like our patient profile last month, Jessica’s story was featured on the television show “The Doctors.” They recounted the moments leading up to the incident that left Jessica with serious injuries. Jessica, along with her boyfriend, Jared, were driving home from a day of swimming. They made a quick stop at a gas station and Jared went into the store while Jessica waited in the car. As Jessica waited, a group of five individuals began harassing her. Jared saw what was happening, ran outside, and asked them to stop. Unfortunately, the situation escalated and turned into a physical altercation. The five individuals began fighting with Jared. During the altercation, Jared was able to get free and into his car. At that point, one of the antagonists picked up a metal pipe and threw it at the car. The pipe went through the window and struck Jessica in the mouth. On “The Doctors,” Jessica recounted the moments after. “I remember looking down and seeing my teeth in my hand.” Once her injuries were assessed, she learned the pipe had completely cut through her upper lip and knocked out a total of eight teeth. There was also extensive trauma to the surrounding tissue and teeth. Not only did the physical damage take a toll on Jessica, the emotional damage was equally significant. As Jessica recovered, everyday activities such as eating and drinking remained a challenge. Due to the extensive damage to the front of her mouth, several roots were exposed, causing her excruciating pain. As a result, Jessica needed dental and cosmetic reconstruction. Not only would this restore her appearance, it would also restore functionality to her mouth. A teamwas brought together to make that happen — an oral surgeon, Dr. Parvaz Mizrahi; a plastic surgeon, Dr. Ordon; a lab technician; an anesthesiologist; and myself.
Our priority was to help this young woman get her life back. Together, and with extensive coordination and planning, we were able to do just that. However, as we began work, even I was surprised at the severity of the bone and gum damage. At the same time, we had to combat infection, but thanks to careful planning, we were able to achieve desired results at each stage of the reconstruction. As part of the coordination between doctors, while restoring Jessica’s teeth with veneers and crowns, I had to make sure my work complemented Dr. Ordon’s lip reconstruction. We wanted to be absolutely sure everything looked just right and worked together. It was a wonderful surprise to see each part of the reconstruction come together. From the teeth to the jaw, to the gums and lips, everything fell into place beautifully. Jessica’s features aligned correctly and everything looked great! Jessica’s journey, from the horrific incident to her facial reconstruction, was long and arduous, but together we were able to help her rediscover her confidence, and help her return to a normal life.
- Dr. Maddahi
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