What is Maxillofacial Surgery?

…   An exact literal definition of oral and maxillofacial surgery when taken from the dictionary would be as follows:

Surgery 1. The branch of medicine that deals with the diagnosis and treatment of injury, deformity, and disease by manual and instrumental means. 2. A surgical operation or procedure, especially one involving the removal or replacement of a diseased organ or tissue. 1

Maxillofacial 1. Relating to or involving the maxilla and the face.2

Maxilla 1. Anatomy Either of a pair of bones of the human skull fusing in the midline and forming the upper jaw. 2. A homologous bone of the skull in other vertebrates.3

However, in the modern day era the role of the oral and maxillofacial surgeon in the healthcare field is an ever expanding one.  Oral and maxillofacial surgery covers the correction of a wide spectrum of diseases, injuries and defects (both congenital and acquired) in the head, neck, face, jaws and the hard and soft tissues of the oral and maxillofacial region. It is an internationally recognized surgical specialty. In the US (and many other countries) it is one of the nine specialties of dentistry, however, it is also recognized as a medical specialty in certain parts of the world…4

It often times can represent a merger between the medical and dental fields. 


All of the doctors at San Francisco Surgical Arts are Board Certified Oral Maxillofacial Surgeons with both medical and dental Degrees.  This means that upon completing dental school, the doctors extended their education with 3 additional years of medical school as well as a general surgery internship year.

View Resume: http://sfsurgicalarts.com/meet-us/doctor.asp


As Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons the doctors at SFSA perform many specialized procedures.  Among these include (but are not limited to):

Wisdom Teeth  – The extraction of wisdom teeth is necessary when they are prevented from properly erupting within the mouth.

Dental Implants – The science designated to the implantation of components that are a foundation for the replacement of teeth that look, feel, and function like natural teeth.

Facial Cosmetic Surgery – surgical correction of aesthetic deformities including Botox, fillers and surgery.

Oral Pathology – The detection of abnormal defects of the lips, cheeks, palate, and gum tissue around the teeth, tongue, face and/or neck.

Orthognathic Surgery (Jaw Surgery) – The treatment of deformities and abnormalities of the jaw.

Distraction Osteogenisis  – A relatively new method of treatment for selected deformities and defects of the oral and facial skeleton.

Facial Trauma – The emergency care, acute treatment and long-term reconstruction of facial and intra oral lacerations, avulsed (knocked out) teeth, fractured facial bones (cheek, nose or eye socket), and fractured jaws (upper and lower jaw).

Teeth In An Hour – The revolutionary concept providing patients with fully functioning teeth on dental implants in one single procedure that lasts about an hour.

Bone Grafting – The repair of inadequate bone structure due to previous extractions, gum disease or injuries.

TMJ Disorders – The treatment of TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorders or problems related to the jaw joint.

Cleft Lip and Palate – The correction of a condition that creates an opening in the upper lip between the mouth and nose.

Sleep Apnea –The diagnosis and treatment of obstructed airway passage.


For more information on any of these procedures please visit our website:



1. http://www.thefreedictionary.com/surgery
2. http://www.thefreedictionary.com/maxillofacial
3. http://www.thefreedictionary.com/maxilla
4. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oral_and_maxillofacial_surgery

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