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From Trooth.com

A number of Utah oral and maxillofacial surgeons have begun a dentistry turf war with a fellow dentist, Heath Hendrickson, over the extraction of wisdom teeth. The surgeons have sponsored a website (trooth.com) and a billboard on I-15 in Utah County, Utah (I will endeavor to get a photo of the billboard tomorrow).

The oral surgeons who are listed below have a beef with general dentist, Health Hendrickson, who refers to himself as Dr. Wisdom Teeth.

Trooth.com Board MembersBut, what is the FLAP?

Dr. Hendrickson is a licensed, undisciplined Utah dentist who extracts wisdom teeth.

There seems to be more to the story.

Here is Dr. Hendrickson’s website at DrWisdomTeeth.com:

Dr Wisdom Teeth websiteMy experience in these dental turf wars is money, money and more money.

Do the oral surgeons resent the fact that as a general dentist, Dr. Hendrickson is invading their lucrative turf of extracting wisdom teeth – and at a reduced fee to boot?

Or, is there a public safety concern?

Yet, the Utah Board that regulates dentistry has never disciplined Dr. Hendrickson.

Here are the Utah records:

Heath Hendrickson Provo Dental Licenseand

Heath Hendrickson Heber City Dental License

Even the Utah Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons has jumped into the act seemingly denigrating general dentists in order to protect their own dental turf. Here is more:

Why an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon Should Manage Your Wisdom Teeth

Dentists learn to remove teeth in dental school the same way physicians learn how to cast a broken bone in medical school.  However as with broken bones, the difficulty, complexity and risk of the procedure varies; often requiring specialty training in order to provide the most effective, safe, and comfortable treatment.

Oral and maxillofacial surgeons are dental specialists who receive 4 to 6 years of additional medical and surgical training beyond dental school in order to specialize in surgical procedures related to teeth, jaw, and face and to administer general anesthesia. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons focus on:

  •             Wisdom tooth removal
  •             Complicated tooth removal
  •             Dental implants
  •             Reconstructive jaw surgery
  •             Facial skeletal reconstruction
  •             Management of impacted teeth
  •             TMJ disorders
  •             Facial trauma
  •             Facial cosmetic surgery
  •             Oral and maxillofacial pathology (diseases of the mouth, face and jaws)
  •             Sleep apnea
  •             General anesthesia

Dentists may perform any treatment they believe necessary that falls within scope of the state’s dental practice act, including tooth removal. Many dentists are able to perform straightforward tooth removal without difficulty. However, occasions may arise when removal of an impacted or erupted tooth is difficult or complicated. It is in the patient’s best interest to have these procedures performed by an oral and maxillofacial surgeon with proper training, as this ensures the best outcome for the patient.

If a dentist without appropriate training performs difficult or complicated tooth removal, patients may have increased risk of infection, dry socket, nerve injury, a lengthy and unpleasant procedure, and possibly additional surgery needed to produce complete healing. (Some dental practices limit their procedures to tooth removal only and patients may not be aware that the practitioner is not a formally trained oral and maxillofacial surgeon. The Utah Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons understands  “Wisdom Teeth Only” and “Simply Wisdomteeth” to be examples of this type of practice.) If complications occur during tooth removal, the patient is often referred to an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. In such cases, the patient has often experienced considerable stress and discomfort that likely would have been avoided if a properly trained oral and maxillofacial surgeon had been consulted originally. In most cases, an oral and maxillofacial surgeon can perform complicated or difficult tooth removal in a few minutes. A properly trained oral and maxillofacial surgeon typically can provide an anesthetic and remove four impacted wisdom teeth in 30 minutes or less.

I will try to interview some of the parties involved during the next few days.

I have a feeling this turf war is going to get uglier.

Stay tuned…..

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14 Responses to “Wisdom Teeth Turf War Erupts in Utah”
  1. Debra says:

    As Congressman Ryan so aptly pointed out during the vice presidential debate, “If you don’t have a good record to run on, paint your opponent as someone to run from…”. This is exactly what these oral surgeons are doing to Dr. Hendrickson. Maybe they should focus on gaining business with their own reputations, professionalism, personality, etc. These junior high antics are so transparent they’re laughable. Good luck gaining clientele by attacking colleagues. It won’t work with the vast majority of people.

  2. […] billboard that Utah oral surgeons have erected in their “public awareness” campaign or what I call a “Turf War” with Dr. Wisdom Teeth, general dentist, Heath Hendrickson, […]

  3. […] remember the FLAP. A number of Utah oral and maxillofacial surgeons have begun a dentistry turf war with a fellow […]

  4. […] remember the FLAP. A number of Utah oral and maxillofacial surgeons have begun a dentistry turf war with a fellow […]

  5. […] remember the FLAP. A number of Utah oral and maxillofacial surgeons have begun a dentistry turf war with a fellow […]

  6. Toothslayer says:

    Waaa! Waaa! Heath is awesome at taking wisdom teeth out. He has probably taken more wisdom teeth out over the last 10 yrs than all those oral surgeons combined.

  7. WTO Advocate says:

    I had my Wisdom Teeth out at Wisdom Teeth Only and had a good experience. Im not sure what the Oral Surgeons mean when they say that the cost is the same, because I called 3 different Oral Surgeons in the area and they all wanted $800 out of my pocket on top of what my insurance would pay. At Wisdom Teeth Only I had the procedure done for $0 out of my pocket. Something is fishy, I fee Dr. Hendrickson cared much more about HELPING me with my problem than any of the offices of Oral Surgeons that I called.

  8. […] remember the FLAP. A number of Utah oral and maxillofacial surgeons have begun a dentistry turf war with a fellow […]

  9. […] remember the FLAP. A number of Utah oral and maxillofacial surgeons have begun a dentistry turf war with a fellow […]

  10. […] remember the FLAP. A number of Utah oral and maxillofacial surgeons have begun a dentistry turf war with a fellow […]

  11. Emily says:

    I had my wisdom teeth extracted by Dr Hendrickson and had a great experience!! I have referred many friends and family to him and they had a good experience too! You don’t need to be an oral surgeon to take out wisdom teeth. These oral surgeons need to get better things to complain and spend money on! Maybe pooling their resources and money to help the poor and needy in our area.

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