“It’s hard to build but easy to destroy”. Such is the case with road traffic accidents which result in fractures of the face most often, fracturing the jaw bones and damaging associated structures. One cannot go back to their regular food habits if the fractured jaw isn’t operated on. Scary isn’t it? It is up to the Oral and Maxillofacial surgeon to reapproximate the fractures and refixes them in order to give back the form of the jaw no matter how bad the fracture is.
Use of titanium plates and screws for fixation and bridging segments is the standard of care. What if there is a shattered bone segment? Fixing up such fractures is challenging at times. Surgeons use certain bone graft materials or substitutes in order to replace the lost shattered bone segment.
In one such case operated by the maxillofacial surgeon Dr. Sunil Richardson, a 32yr old man met with a road traffic accident, leading to multiple fractures on his body including a bad lower jaw fracture, which caused the lower front teeth to fall backward along with the inability to bite or swallow. The shattered bone pieces and the backward displacement of the segment were to be critically dealt with.
The patient underwent ORIF (OPEN REDUCTION INTERNAL FIXATION of the fracture UNDER GENERAL ANESTHESIA).
First, the lower and upper teeth were brought into biting position with the help of wires (arch bars). When the central smaller bony fragments at the chin bone were removed, there was a gap between the remaining undamaged bone segments of either side. Two titanium plates were used to bridge and fix the fracture. Titanium plates and screws were used to stabilize the fracture and then grafting of the defect was done using high-quality artificial bone substitute which helps in bone growth and healing.
At the Richardson’s even the most challenging cases are treated without compromise, using the right surgical techniques with the latest high-quality materials and products to help the patients recover and lead a normal life.