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A fifty year old man contacted The Foundation after several surgeries had been performed in fruitless efforts to correct an "oro-antral fistula." (This is an abnormal opening between the mouth and one of the sinuses in the upper jaw). As a result of such an opening, food put in the mouth makes its way into the nose and also causes chronic infection of the sinus. Because this man had lost his medical insurance he could no longer find help.
This is the patient on the operating table before surgical repair. The gum line of his left upper jaw was missing (note the depression in the left cheek). A plan was made to obliterate the sinus and the abnormal opening with soft tissue known as "fascia" from the left side of the head.

This shows the fascia raised from beneath the scalp and attached by the vessels which supply it (in front of the ear). This incision also allows access to the cheek bone under which the fascia can be tunneled into the mouth.

Here the fascia is seen in the mouth, having been brought in beneath the cheek bone. It will be placed through the hole in the sinus floor after the sinus is "debrided," or surgically cleaned.

The opening is shown healed, several weeks later. The patient could be fitted for a new denture after this procedure and there were no more sinus-related problems.

2/21/00

http://www.frps.org