A Quick Guide on Veterinary Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

A Quick Guide on Veterinary Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

There are lots of reasons that an animal may need dental surgery. Not all dental surgeries are significant; they may be as basic as removing plaque and calculus from tooth roots, extracting an unsalvageable tooth, etc. But of course, certain conditions require oral surgery.

Nevertheless, whether minor or major surgeries, as a pet owner, you need to know why your veterinarian refers your pet to an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. Keep reading to learn more about this dental specialization.

What is a veterinary surgeon?

A veterinary surgeon has undertaken advanced training to become a specialist after veterinary school. This training contains a minimum of a one-year internship followed by a three-year residency program. During their residency, they undergo specific training and caseload requirements. Additionally, they need to do research that needs to be published in a scientific journal and then pass a comprehensive exam. Visit a website here to learn more about vet surgery.

What is an oral and maxillofacial surgeon?

You may be familiar with a vet dentist; aside from your primary vet, you probably bring your pet to a dog dentist. They ensure that your pet’s oral health remains in excellent condition. 

Oral and maxillofacial surgery is simply one of the many subspecialties in dentistry. An oral and maxillofacial surgeon is a board-certified dentist with advanced training in treating illness, trauma, and defects in the teeth, jaws, face, head, and neck. This requires advanced training and collaboration with other specialists in comprehensive animal facilities like Tender Care Animal Hospital.

Why Pet Is Referred to an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon

Suppose your cat or dog has an oral-related issue or trauma requiring advanced treatment and procedures. In that case, your primary veterinarian or dentist might refer you to an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. Here are some of the clinical treatments they execute:

Trauma Reconstruction

Head trauma can be brought on by an animal bite, falling from heights, projectiles, car accidents, etc. Such injury or trauma can cause severe pain and disrupt occlusion and oral functions. When an injury affects the teeth or soft tissues, the animal might not have the ability to utilize its mouth correctly. This equates to losing the capacity to eat, groom, and defend themselves.

Tumor Removal and Reconstruction

The treatment plan for the tumor is based on biopsy results. The most effective course of action for most tumors is to remove them altogether; this frequently results in a better prognosis. After removing the mass, a facial reconstruction follows in many cases. Reconstruction is not just for the aesthetic outcome but for the oral function to become normal.

Periodontal Surgery

A periodontal surgical procedure perhaps is one of the most typical maxillofacial procedures. Sometimes, extracting the affected teeth is the only means to release the patient from unbearable pain. Even what might look like a simple tooth extraction still requires a surgical closure on the extraction site to deny access to food and bacteria.


There are times that pets develop more complicated conditions, and the only viable remedy is oral surgery. Only a dentist specializing in oral and maxillofacial surgery can deal most effectively with situations like removing tumorous growths, providing solutions for palate defects, and repairing jaw fractures.

They are committed to providing the very best in medical care. Maxillofacial surgeons are a resource for your primary veterinarians and dentists in instances beyond their scope. Following the surgery and other post-operative care, expect your primary veterinarian to return to the ongoing care for the animal.