A facial injury can do more than physical damage: it can affect your daily life and bring about emotional trauma. If you’re seeking help for repairing facial trauma, you shouldn’t settle for anything less than a facial trauma specialist. At Hill Country Oral Surgery, our facial trauma experts strive to help patients heal their facial trauma and regain their self-confidence and sense of normalcy.
What Is a Facial Trauma Specialist?
Facial trauma specialists are surgeons who specialize on treating and fixing injuries of the face. Medical professionals like oral and maxillofacial surgeons are considered to be facial trauma specialists. A maxillofacial, or facial, trauma can involve soft tissue injuries like burns, bruises, nasal fractures, fractures of the jaw, and eye injuries. Facial trauma specialists are specifically trained and are uniquely qualified to manage such injuries. These experts don’t just consider how the fractures and physical damages will be treated, but they also use cosmetic skill and artistry to make the results as natural and aesthetically pleasing as possible. Facial trauma specialists typically treat the following injuries:
- Facial lacerations
- Intra oral lacerations
- Avulsed (knocked out) teeth
- Fractured facial bones (cheek, nose or eye socket)
- Fractured jaws (upper and lower jaw)
Facial Trauma Specialist Emergency Care Responsibilities
Though facial trauma is unlikely fatal, in several cases it can be deadly. During an emergency care, facial trauma specialists look at many factors to assure the patient’s safety. The most important elements to consider once the patient has been brought to the emergency room is the status of the airways, cervical spine, and blood circulation.
Maxillofacial injuries are usually complicated by a compromised airway. Location of the injury, the severity of the damage, the type of damage, and the patient’s condition (i.e. if he’s intoxicated with drug or alcohol) are several factors that may cause an obstruction in the air passage. Because a blocked airway can be fatal to the patient, the facial trauma specialist secures the patient’s airway condition to guarantee his safety.
The proximity of the cervical spine to the facial injury must be considered in the event of a maxillofacial trauma. From 1%-10% in all facial trauma scenario, the spine is affected, which typically results to more serious damages in health. The facial trauma specialist will assess the patient, depending if he is awake or unconscious, and perform a series of tests to determine if the spine is affected by the injury.
After addressing breathing problems, the facial trauma specialist will look for signs of damage in the circulatory system. The face has a large blood supply, which when damaged can result to a fatal hemorrhage. Bleeding must be controlled if the facial trauma causes excessive blood loss. Facial trauma specialists are well-trained to specifically manage these emergency scenarios.
Facial Trauma Specialist Acute Treatment Responsibilities
Acute treatment for facial trauma is usually done within 72 hours after the incident. This is a crucial stage of treatment. Necessary steps must be performed to prevent muscle atrophy. During the acute treatment, airway and hemorrhage issues are as well addressed. Facial trauma specialists perform necessary treatments to prevent the aggravation of infection, defect in appearance, and other life-threatening risks.
Facial Trauma Specialist Long-Term Reconstruction Responsibilities
Facial trauma reconstruction is also one of the responsibilities of an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. Long-term reconstruction may involve multiple aesthetic surgeries to reduce the damage of the facial injury. After the patient’s health has been addressed, a series of reconstructive surgeries may be recommended depending on the severity of the facial damage.
Facial Trauma Specialist Rehabilitation Responsibilities
Rehabilitation of maxillofacial trauma patients is another responsibility of a facial trauma expert. Damages brought by a facial trauma may cause impairments to facial tissues and muscles. These damages may lead to paralyzed facial movements and the inability to perform normal tasks. Prosthetics may be suggested as part of the rehabilitation. The facial trauma specialist will perform and suggest specific medical therapies to restore motor function like chewing and speech and to help the patient achieve normal oro-facial appearance.
Learn More About What a Facial Trauma Specialist Can Do
Our highly-trained, and well-experienced facial trauma specialists always give their best to every patient who needs medical care after a facial trauma. Aside from their physical treatments, our surgeons also help patients recover their self-confidence and mental strength. Find out more about what our facial trauma specialists can do. Reach out to Hill Country Oral Surgery today!