I saw a pretty cool procedure on a ~14 year old kid at the OS office I shadow at...called an exposure I think. First both primary canines were extracted, and then an incision was made into the hard palate and the soft tissue was "peeled back" to expose the permanant canines. The exposed permanant canines (just the occlusal surface) were then cleaned/dried in order to cement on a "button" that has a gold chain to the occlusal surface of those exposed permanant canines. The gold chain was then brought through the extraction site (of the primaries), cut to length and stitched in place for future placement on an orthodontic bracket, and everything stitched up. I guess this helps guide the permanant canine into the correct position. Kind of a nice combination of Oral Surgery, Orthodontics, and General Dentistry. BTW sorry for the lack of the better terms, this was kind of my own little summary.
Id really like to see some orthognathic or even trauma surgery though.
The coolest thing I have seen is a la forte osteotomy wire removal, and a bilateral sagital split osteotomy in the OR. But I am a surgical assistant for an OMS practice so I have been lucky enough to see a lot of really cool proceedures.
The office I work at hires pre-dent students every summer to come in and train as summer help (kind of an internship) I did this for two years in my undergrad... then when I graduated they invited me to work full time for a year before I head of to D-school. Everyone should shadow at an OMS office, and ask them if they offer any of the same opportunities that I had. Its really an interesting specialty. It will depend on your state laws, but just ask them if they are looking for help in the summer!!!!! It is the busiest time of the year, and its when most people in the office like to take vacation!!! wouldn't hurt to ask!
I was lucky enough to get to volunteer in an OMS residency program at a hospital. It was truly awesome! Obviously they did the normal 3rd molar extraction but since it was a residency program they did a lot of oral cancer cases. Many times I went to the OR to see neck dissections, and several oral cancer cases.
By far the most interesting case was oral cancer. One patient had oral cancer on the bottom of their mouth which was removed. They replaced the tissue in the mouth by removing skin and veins from the guys own arm, then replaced it in the mouth, reconnecting the veins to his blood supply.
I'm doing an independent study class at Vanderbilt and I am shadowing in the OMS clinic at the hospital. I've seen two self inflicted gunshot wounds where one used a shotgun and the other guy used a rifle. The shotgun was this past weekend and he was missing part of his mandible and a large part of his maxilla. His orbital floor was by his throat, and he was in really bad shape. You could see his forehead, but everything else was simply bloody tissue, his face was gone. They plated the bone he had left, and removed his wisdom teeth (lol) because they were impacted. (They figured while they were in there, they might as well save him a surgery) I'm surprised he didn't die from blood loss. Apparently it happens pretty often because of the kick from the shotguns when placed under the chin. Luckily, his skin all flapped back over and he only had a small hole to the left of his nose where the birdshot left. It was a sight to see. The rifle lost his nose, and has two small holes by his eyes. He has had about 5 surgeries and still looks like he's in bad shape. The attempted suicide cases are tragic and pretty gruesome.
Bone graft from the mandible to support implants into the maxilla (incisor and 2nd molar). The surgeon was so casual as he peeled back the gums and cut out a chunk of bone. Then he just rammed it beneath the gums on the maxilla and sutured it up with the some "bone paste" that he made by grinding down the edge of the bone graft.