First Cancer Patient To Receive A New Jaw Bone, Dental Implants, And 3D Printed Teeth All In One Surgery On The West Coast – “The Jaw In A Day Procedure”
What makes replacing teeth with dental implants difficult? Patients can have a multitude of factors that can significantly complicate the ability for reconstructive surgeons to replace missing teeth. This includes lack of bone, health problems such as diabetes, history of radiation, inadequate gum tissue and lack of time.
Now imagine having a diagnosis of head and neck cancer that requires removal of part of your jaw and your teeth. Many patients in this scenario can be without teeth for over a year.
But the reconstructive surgeons at Head and Neck Surgical Associates have changed that. Using their intricate knowledge of dentistry, medicine computer surgical planning and 3D printing, they were able to replace a cancer patient’s jaw and teeth in ONE Day.
Dr. Baber Khatib, M.D., D.D.S., F.A.C.S. has performed a first-in-Oregon surgery that rebuilds a cancer patient’s jaw and adds dental implants and 3D printed teeth, all in a day. “Jaw-in-a-Day” was previously offered to non-cancer patients but is now available to cancer patients as well. Terry Sambrailo turned out to be an excellent candidate for the innovative procedure. The team that performed the surgery hails from the Head and Neck Surgical Associates, including Ashish Patel, M.D., D.D.S., and Dr. Khatib.
Terry, age 74, was diagnosed with cancer in her left jaw last year and eventually contacted Dr. Khatib and the rest of the team. She was nervous that she was going to have to go through a disfiguring procedure. Fortunately, she was offered the jaw-in-a-day. The procedure involves removing the tumor then using a piece of the patient’s fibula (calf bone) to fashion a new jaw, which is then fitted with dental implants within hours. The implants are then immediately fitted with 3D printed teeth, “I think it’s wonderful, and I’m just fortunate that I was a good candidate for it,” Sambrailo said.
“I was able to use computer surgical planning to fabricate cutting guides on the fibula, cut it into a shape into a jaw that looked natural and similar to what her original jaw looked like and then attached teeth on dental implants all at the time of the surgery,” Dr. Khatib said. “Being able to give patients teeth does more than just give them a smile, which is a pretty significant thing in itself, but it offers them an ability to chew, to swallow and articulate so much better.”
Dr. Khatib describes the technique as, “incredible and revolutionary ”, and said, “The technology behind this is phenomenal.”
Previously the process for rebuilding the jaw and giving the patient teeth took anywhere from one to two years. Now, jaw-in-a-day gives patients a much higher quality of life much more quickly.
“One of the devastating things with oral cancer is that – not only does it require this large removal of the area of the cancer, but this can affect the way patients look, speak, interact with people afterward, and this is lifelong, what used to be a disfiguring type of surgery,” Dr. Khatib said.
The team and Ms. Sambrailo estimate that she saved nine months to a year of various procedures by having the new procedure done instead of the old way.
Schedule a consult with HNSA to discuss any missing teeth or corrective reconstructive surgery.