Results vs Risks vs Rewards

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Results vs Risks vs Rewards

#1 Post by yesnomaybe »

So orthognathic surgery, the orthodontics, the dental visits, the insurance, and money are all stressful enough.
But if you've ever read posts about people who were the person to experience nerve damage, an inability CLOSE their mouth or lost their soft palate from the surgery, it makes me value whatever fubar teeth and jaws I do have today. I feel a lot of people are hoodwinked into handing over what's now upwards of $50,000 for what? And according to people who have had orthognathic double jaw surgery they are not even seeing the physical facial rewards they were promised as a small percentage are happy with how they look afterward.

I mean, really, how many times have you heard the dentist or oral surgeon turn your skeletal issues (which should be about physical health and physiology) into a "you look crappy and will look better when we're done breaking open your jaws, sewing them shut for a small $50,000."

So what I am asking is are you sure the risks are worth it? You cannot replace the palate in your mouth, you cannot fix nerve damage in your face, and what not. So, what about the risks? Does it bother anyone else?

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Re: Results vs Risks vs Rewards

#2 Post by Jfullflow10 »

It's definitely a major surgery that should be given a ton of thought. It's a major change to your body and how you look but I think you have to realize, many of those risks are rare but people are far more likely to post about procedures gone wrong rather than right. I'm 6 weeks post-op double jaw surgery, I'm already going back in tomorrow for a revision due to my upper jaw collapsing inward. I had the surgery because I had a horrible under bite than affected my chewing, my upper jaw was also so far back it was cutting off my airway significantly causing sleep apnea. My airway is now completely open, I was immediately able to ditch my CPAP following surgery and haven't needed it since. So while it stinks I have to go back in and have my upper jaw set back into place, it's still worth it to me, even though at times I don't feel that way. Everyone needs to look at their case individually and not judge off the risks alone, IMO. If you go searching for people who have had setbacks or have had unfortunate results, those people are very easy to find because they just want to know they are not alone in having those issues. People who have no setbacks, typically don't post about it. The internet is amazing but it's also easy to think you're dying by reading too much when you really just have a common cold.

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Re: Results vs Risks vs Rewards

#3 Post by kplatt2010 »

Hi There- was it worth it? Yes. Would I do it again? Yes. Would I get more than one consult? H *ll yes. Did I pay $50K? No, insurance covered with sleep apnea diagnosis.

Did I go into procedure naively believing it would be a walk in the park? Yes. Was it a walk in the park? No.

I think you have to weigh your risks versus benefits, get more than one consult, and consider / explore all alternatives. In the end; one must remember that any time you're going into the OR, there are inherent risks. Only you can decide for yourself whether the benefits outweigh the risk.
Orthognathic surgery known potential complications:
1. Deviated septum - the procedure is done via nasal intubation
2. Blood loss - it's a bloody procedure; may require blood transfusion depending on amount lost
3. Infection - resulting in plates & screws having to be removed
4. Nerve damage - temporary or permanent
5. Loose hardware - any time
6. Relapse
7. Unintended facial fractures other than jaw

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Re: Results vs Risks vs Rewards

#4 Post by Sarah96 »

I think that it's a really personal thing. Jaw surgery is a major surgery and even simple procedures have their own risks so jaw surgery has its ups and downs. You already mentioned the possible negatives of this surgery. So you should ask yourself if you really need this surgery or you can live with your problems throughout your life. I think if you consider this surgery that means you are not willing to live with these problems. So next step is to find a good surgeon. That's the most important thing. You already spend alot of money for surgery, at least do it with the very best. Then again, communication with your surgeon is important. Consult different surgeons and choose someone you feel who is the best for you. Read reviews a lot.
Yes there are a lot of people here talking about the negatives of this surgery so it is discouraging for the ones who want to have this surgery. I personally shared my problems here a lot and I had to have a revision. But it's normal that negative outcomes are spoken more than positives. Just think about it, not many people have jaw surgery and when you have problems it's even more difficult to find someone who can relate with your situation. You just want to feel you are not alone and try to have opinions of the people who are at the same boat with you. You want to have a solution and this forum is the best way to find support. Positive outcomes are not spoken much here because when people have good outcomes they tend to move on with their lives and try to forget the past. Actually positive outcomes are way more than negative ones.
So what I mean is, don't worry. Struggling ones are a minority. But it's important to be realistic. You shouldn't expect more than what can be actually done. Jaw surgery may not help with every problem you have. And about recovery, it depends on people. It's hard yes but it's not the worst.

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Re: Results vs Risks vs Rewards

#5 Post by Metalmouth33 »

It may be true that someone unhappy with their results is more likely to post about it here than someone who is happy with theirs.

But that doesn't discredit them. Jaw surgery is a major surgery with known setbacks. The number of people complaining about is enough to tell you that the risks are not as small as you would hope.

The scope of the risks may not be that severe. The chance of death isn't even worth considering. But for the risks that are possible, the chance is quite high.Things like nerve damage, bad aesthetics, Tmj Pain post surgery, etc, are still quite burdensome for some patients. How many laser eye surgeries go blind? 1 in 10 million? How many jaw surgeries wish they never did it afterwards? 1 in 20?
I'm just throwing out a random number, maybe it's 1 in 10, maybe it's 1 in 50. But I hope you get the point. The chances are not negligible at all.

Here's another question, do you think any Jaw surgeon would want to show you a few dozen of the worst testimonials here? I don't think they'd ever show you one. I get that people going into this surgery want to focus on the positive results they're hoping for, but it's even more important that you try to realize what it will be like if things go wrong. I believe every single jaw surgery patient underweights the risks, which is what makes this website an invaluable resource. Only here can you really find out what it's like.

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