(Closed) Jaw Surgery… Just need someone to talk to or a doctor :(

posted 6 years ago in Wellness
Post # 4
75 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

@Roxykitten:  Goodness, I’m so sorry, this sounds horrible!

I am not a lawyer and I don’t know a whole lot about medical malpractice, but do you know if you could pursue legal action against the surgeon?  Do you know if TMJ was one of the risks of this surgery?  Hopefully some of the Bees working in law will chime in soon and and give more informative advice.

Post # 5
595 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

I had surgery about 12 years ago to correct problems with my jaw. I had my bottom jaw cut and moved out. My chin was moved out and my top jaw was widened and the front part of it moved down. Before tge surgery I was told that I barely had any disk left in my jaw. I actually went to an oral surgeon who did a work up and refused to do the surgery because it was too complicatedfor him. Both surgeons spoke of TMJ but never wrote it in my file and i was able to have the surgery. 

I haven’t reallyhad any problems besides no feeling in my bottom lip and chin. I do clench my teeth alot sometimes so I have to be careful of that. 

I would suggest talking to you doctor to see if there is another diagnosis that he can give you. 

Post # 8
1381 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

@Roxykitten:  Oh, wow.. I’m sorry you have to go through such an ordeal πŸ™  Especially after having dealt with such a major surgery in the first place!  Both my brother and my best friend underwent orthognathic surgery recently, so now I’m genuinely concerned for them too.

This is kind of beyond my scope (this is more oral & maxillofacial territory and I’m a general dentist), but I did some research for you because I was curious myself.

I found this published in one of the most popular OMFS journals: “Patients with preexisting TMJ dysfunction undergoing orthognathic surgery, particularly mandibular advancement, are likely to have significant worsening of the TMJ dysfunction postsurgery. TMJ dysfunction must be closely evaluated, treated if necessary, and monitored in the orthognathic surgery patient.”


I’m guessing by your description of your open, over crossbite, you probably had both upper and lower jaws operated on..?  In your case, surgeons would either have to just retrude the upper jaw or more commonly have to retrude the upper jaw in combination with extruding (or “advancing”) the lower jaw.  So the above statement may unfortunately apply to you.  πŸ™  

Did you have any jaw problems or TMJ prior to your major surgery?  It seems like TMJ problems post-surgery are pretty common.  The paperwork for ortho surgery is pretty meaty, so it probably stated that as a potential risk.  Before considering any legal action, I’d definitely consult another oral & maxillofacial surgeon for an opinion.  Tell him/her, “Listen, I’ve had this massive surgery that I was so happy with the results with years ago, but now I’m just concerned with this pain from my jaw locking” and just get an objective recommendation.  They might have some great options to help prevent your disk from dislodging and seating elsewhere.  

*You’re REALLY supposed to consult with the surgeon who did your surgery in the first place – this person at the very least should be able to hear you out!  I see that you tried.. I’d be so mad and frustrated if I were you!

If TMJ really is to blame for your pain (and it really sounds to me like it is), standard treatment for diagnosing a patient with TMJ really wouldn’t do.  We’d normally put you on a regimen of Motrin and a muscle relaxer for up to 2 weeks and see if your problems subside. However I feel your problems are more complex, and we’d have to deal with the underlying problems instead – slipped disk and the bone wearing on bone as a result.

I really hope you find relief and a solution, because nobody should have to go through chronic pain like this.  Please keep us posted!

Post # 9
8692 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

Is this your dental insurance that won’t cover TMJ, or regular health insurance?

Post # 10
2359 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

ahead supposed to have jaw surgery done many years ago but opted not to because I know three people that have had it and they are worse off now then before.  My best friends dad had it done three seperate times and his jaw just kept growing back to the way it was prior to the surgery.

yea, not gonna happen with me.

Post # 14
1381 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

@Roxykitten:  You are so welcome. πŸ™‚  I genuinely sympathize with your situation.  One thing is for sure though – I definitely wouldn’t start blaming myself for not getting other opinions at 16-17 years of age..!  This could happen to anybody, and at that tender age we just don’t know any better and don’t question what older professionals tell us we need.

I really wish there was an easier way to help you.  You should really consider flying in to my area (NYC metro region) and see the same surgeon that my brother and best friend saw.  He’s known for performing ortho surgeries and teaches at Columbia University in his spare time.  He’s also very kind and understanding.  PM me if you want to know his details, ok?  I would love for you to get this issue resolved before your bone resorbs even more! πŸ™

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