Colleagues often get in touch with me on Messenger. A couple of days ago I got this message:
“Hi Federico, how are you? I’d like to ask you if you hold advanced implant surgery courses as my lack of confidence prevents me from practicing it…”
It’s definitely true! Even today there are still some colleagues who spend their professional life performing implant surgery, but avoid treating the most difficult cases either because they don’t trust their skills or because of the little knowledge of the surgical techniques they need.
I often receive patients who have been treated in an uncomplete way, lot of dentists indeed put implants in full-of-bone areas and leave the sites with a scarce amount bone edentulous.
Obviously dentists are not the ones to blame, the educational world is, as it arises much confusion. The latter is packed with confused “masters”, lacking real practical skills, who are there only for “political” or commercial reasons. They are often hold hostage by companies forcing them to promote their latest product as the panacea for all the surgical problems… and after few years we discover that the “new super-fantastic material” is no longer on the market and, above all, has never been scientifically supported.
I’m giving you two fundamental pieces of information.
If you know the right concepts the advanced implant surgery is simple!
Obviously a learning curve is needed, but no worse than restorative dentistry or endodontics. What is different is… how can I call it?… well: brass balls! I mean the willingness to look risk straight in the eyes.
But I’m sure you’ve got your pair of brass balls. So we’re fine.
There is a big misunderstanding in surgery! Have you ever seen a Mastechef season?
All the competitors arrive to the program being quite good at cooking. In the course of the reality show they become even better, because they grasp some tricks and secrets about cooking. Then, at a certain point, the pastry round comes and it’s a proper disaster.
The same competitors who had demonstrated good abilities as chefs, make fools of themselves as pastry chefs!
But, you might say, cooking is cooking.
No, my dear, cooking is an art, pastry is chemistry!
If you don’t stick to the recipe, if you don’t respect the doses to the grammes, the procedures, the times to the second, your recipes will fail! And you will suck, no doubt!
Well, the second piece of information is:
While a good part of dentistry is an art and requires disposition and skill, surgery is like chemistry and yes, it does require a fair shre of skill, but, most of all, a solid knowledge of the techniques. And you must follow the technique thoroughly.
If you think you’re a genius and you want to invent your own techniques, then test them via a good scientific approach, wait until independent groups will have tested them too, wait for the revisors to evaluate scientific results and then and only then teach them to other colleagues.
The problem is that everyone wants to invent something, but there is a small number of geniuses in the world, and if you, just like me, are not a genius, then learn principles and techniques which work and apply them diligently, confidently and… with your brain switched off!
You will see for yourself that even the most complex surgery will work and you will benefit from it.
One of the principles I love most in bone augmentation is the suturing technique.
15 years ago my first master told me:
“Do not start using PTFE membranes, because you would screw it up and you would get burned. Start with collagen membranes, check the heling and when you have no more exposures… only then… start using non-resorbable membranes.”
I’m giving you the same advice.
Even when you perform simple reconstructive procedures train yourself using the right suturing technique you are about to see in the video. In this way you will quickly enter your advanced surgery comfort zone!