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Dent Clin North Am. 2000 Oct;44(4):851-73.

Lasers in oral and maxillofacial surgery.

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  • 1Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Virginia Commonwealth University, Medical College of Virginia, Schools of Dentistry and Medicine, Richmond, USA.


Because of their many advantages, lasers have become indispensable in OMS as a modality for soft tissue surgery. Based on manufacturer estimates, approximately 10% to 20% of all oral and maxillofacial surgeons have one or more lasers in their offices, and most surgeons have access to lasers in the hospital. Lasers not only enhance the current surgical options for treatment, but also have expanded the scope of practice. There are many uses for lasers in OMS, and the advent of new wavelengths will undoubtedly lead to new procedures that can be performed with them. One [figure: see text] elusive use is hard tissue surgery. Although the Er:YAG has been approved for hard tissue use in the United States and currently is being used in general dentistry, it is still not yet practical or proven for large-volume osseous or extraction surgery, in which the greatest opportunity for innovation and clinical use exists. With future research, it is possible that the right wavelength laser will be developed for this purpose, allowing an increased base of procedures performed with lasers in OMS.

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