Oral Maxillofacial Surgery – A Breakdown Of The Specialty And It’s Future Outlook

Written By: Trent Hughes, Dental/Physician Industry Expert and Thought Leader

Oral and maxillofacial surgeons are skilled professionals who have got the training to identify and treat a broad range of diseases, deficiencies and damages in the face, head, jaws, neck as well as the hard and soft tissues related with the oral and maxillofacial area. They are qualified to manage anesthesia and deliver care in an office environment as well. OMFS is a surgical domain in the field of dentistry.

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Oral and maxillofacial surgeons may require additional specialization in the U.S once their residency is complete whether holding a single or double degree. They will have to go through one or two year additional sub-specialty oral and maxillofacial surgery fellowship training in the subsequent capacities:

  • Cosmetic facial surgery, comprising laser resurfacing, facial lift, eyelid (blepharoplasty), brow lift and nose (rhinoplasty).

  • Cranio-maxillofacial trauma, containing facial soft tissue lacerations, orbital (eye socket), zygomatic (cheek bone), mandibular and nasal fractures and strong neck harms

  • Craniofacial surgery/pediatric maxillofacial surgery, covering cleft lip and palate surgery, trans-cranial craniofacial surgery comprising Remodeling (FOAR), Fronto-Orbital Advancement, as well as total vault remodeling

  • Maxillofacial regeneration – basically it is re-creation of the facial area by modern stem cell technique

How to become an Oral and Maxillofacial surgeon?

Oral and maxillofacial surgery is an accepted surgical field in the United States, properly labeled as a dental area. For this purpose one needs a professional dental degree and a qualification in medicine in the course of residency training may be carried out optionally. Oral and maxillofacial surgery is sui generis in this regard among surgical areas. A broad 4-6 year surgical residency training is required in oral and maxillofacial surgery including the U.S. specialty’s range of practice: general surgery, facial cosmetic surgery, facial deformity, dentoalveolar surgery, dental implant surgery, surgery of the oral cavity, surgery of the temporomandibular joint, reconstructive surgery of the head, face, mouth, jaws, neck, facial trauma, facial trauma surgery, craniofacial surgery, facial skin cancer, head and neck cancer, microsurgery free flap reconstruction, as well as distinctively, the management of deep sedation and general anesthesia. Usually, in their final year oral and maxillofacial surgery resident’s work as Chief Resident as per typical norms among surgical specialists.

Board Certification

The American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (ABOMS) govern the Board certification in the United States.”FACS” (Fellow, American College of Surgeons) offers the fellowship for OMS surgeons.

In USA, how many dentists are there?

In the United States, the main professional body is the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) which represents approximately 9,000 oral and maxillofacial surgeons. The peer reviewed Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery is also published by AAOMS and it is also a voluntary specialized body of board certified oral and maxillofacial surgeons.

How does the job market appear?

Presently, the demand for Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons is likely to increase with an estimated 1,580 new jobs to be occupied by 2029. Now over the following few years this exemplifies an annual rise of 4.26 percent. We also need to keep in mind that oral surgery is very competitive. As per survey of OMS market demand and AAOMS statistics, there were 1174 residents and residency accredited training programs were 102. In 374 individuals, wo applied for residency, about 59% of them matched the program.

What’s the average benefit?

According to Doximity’s “2021 Physician Compensation Report Oral and maxillofacial physicians make the top 10 highest paid physician specialties list making on average $545,471 per year. We are seeing a base salary of $300,000 to $400,00 with a 35% to 40% payout on net collections. Almost seventy to eighty percent of oral surgeons serve round-the-clock and for oral surgeons it means 38.6 hours per week usually.

What is the demand for OMS dentist?

Commonly, dental care can surpass the monarchy of annual examinations. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons perform an extensive variety of surgical treatments, covering the treatment of injuries and disorders related with the oral and facial areas. These extremely skilled professionals perform procedures for improving the function or look of the affected regions that covers from the exclusion of compressed teeth to the restoration of facial trauma.

What can be fixed by the Oral maxillofacial surgeons?

The surgeries of the face, mouth, and jaws, are performed by the oral and maxillofacial surgeons. It covers facial cosmetic surgery, dental implant surgery, TMJ surgery, wisdom tooth removal, corrective jaw surgery (orthognathic surgery), bone grafting, maxillofacial trauma, pathology & reconstruction. Moreover, for an oral surgeon tooth extraction is a very common process.

  • Dental implants

  • Corrective jaw surgery

  • Crown lengthening procedures

  • Bone grafting

  • Apicoectomy

  • Root amputation and dental hemisection

For the likely need of a Septoplasty or other surgeries, maybe in the form of sinus correction can be suitably inspected and diagnosed by a Double Board Certified Oral & Maxillo-Facial Surgeon.

What does the future holds for OMS?

No doubt it is challenging task to predict the future. This applies to the field of maxillofacial surgery in an exceptional way since it is repetitively overlapping with additional surgical specialties. Particularly, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (OMFS) close to dentistry and medicine which can cause various challenges in learning and adjusting. The forthcoming prospective of OMFS is inevitably associated with different factors which comprises but not restricted to the following:

  • Workforce and training

  • Legal provisions or rights in practicing OMFS

  • Public perception about OMFS versus other specialists

Specialty Scope:

A greater level of responsibility has come to this profession because of the quite increased visibility of OMFS in the health care system. Basically OMFS is a pretty new specialty that has taken possession of quite a lot of procedures that used to fall under the categories of other surgical specialties. With modern technology and science, the futuristic vision for easy and improved treatments outcome is encouraging for the clinicians who are interested in practical advanced procedures in the field of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. The outcomes will offer the patients with topnotch medical service because a lot of progress has been made in this field. The improved accurateness and pace of treatment, accompanied by reduced distress, and decreased difficulties will provide the real benefits to the patients. So, this is not limited to tooth extraction only but it also covers treatment of other associated diseases as well.

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