Dual-Degree Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

2011 • Volume 5 • Issue 2

Ricardo Cartes-Velásquez & Hernán Ramírez Skinner

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0718-381X2011000200013


Oral and maxillofacial disease profile is treated by overlapping medical and surgical specialties, most of them without the high-level stomatological training of a surgeon dentist. Of these specialties, oral and maxillofacial surgery (OMS) is the only one that requires medical, dental and surgical training, which currently is achieved by 3 main routes. To date, the debate continues about which of them is the ideal, although in Latin America the only way to become an OMS specialist is the odontological. A critical review of international literature in OMS journals and guidelines of international societies, focusing on the bioethical topics, clinical competences, educational, legal and social aspects were made. Dualdegree is advantageous to the WHO practice because of the following aspects: clinical scope (oncological and reconstructive surgery), access to fellowships and scientific-professionals societies, knowledge/evidence generation, surgical prerogatives, legal support and social acknowledgement. From a bioethical perspective, single-degree specialists dealing with maxillofacial pathology may exceed their competences, due to a lack of adequate medical or dental training. The dual-degree specialist seems to be the one, from a comprehensive perspective of the patient, has the knowledge and skills to fully meet the community’s rights to healthcare and contribute to specialized development. Unfortunately, Latin America has no dualdegree training programs and none of Chilean single-degrees fullfil the IAOMS guidelines. This review exposes the need to develop a dual-degree program in Chile to achieve a comprehensive approach in the patient with maxillofacial pathology; consistent with the social, cultural, economic and educational reality of the country.

KEY WORDS: surgery, maxillofacial, dual-degree, review, Chile.


How to cite this article

CARTES-VELÁSQUEZ, R. & RAMÍREZ, S. H. Dual-degree oral and maxillofacial surgery. Int. J. Odontostomat., 5(2):191198, 2011.


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