A French Teenager Undergoes a Successful Surgery to Repair a Complicated Jaw Fracture

A fall caused 16-year-old French tourist H.D.R. to break both sides of the condyle of the lower jaw, which moved inward following dislocation of the temporomandibular joint on both sides. He was at risk of dangerous complications if he was not operated on immediately.

H.D.R. was admitted to FV Hospital with severe trauma to his jaw and teeth that made him unable to speak, swallow, or close his mouth. Through imaging tests, Nguyen Thanh Tung, MD, PhD, Head of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery at FV’s Dental Surgery Department, diagnosed H.D.R. with a fracture of both condyles in the lower jaw, a fracture of the jaw to the right side of his chin, a fracture of the upper front teeth, and a joint fracture. His bite was misaligned, and he had stiffness in the lower jawbone.

CT scan of H.D.R. before surgery

Dr Tung said that most accidental trauma to the face often breaks the chin bone and can be accompanied by a fracture of one condyle, but H.D.R. broke both his chin bone and both sides of the condyle of the lower jaw. This degree of dislocation and inward displacement is quite rare and requires timely surgery otherwise complications will persist, causing jaw tightness, stiffness and sequelae related to jaw movement function as well negatively impacting the patient’s facial aesthetics.

H.D.R. was suffering from dizziness and nausea due to his head injury, so Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery doctors collaborated with their Neurosurgery Department colleagues to monitor him two days. H.D.R. underwent maxillofacial surgery once his vital signs were stable.

His prognosis was complicated as the injured area had many nerves and blood vessels. If the surgery was not skilfully performed, H.D.R. was likely to experience complications after surgery, including facial paralysis, mouth distortion and broken bones that could not be adjusted to the correct position. If the broken bones were to move and damage to a large blood vessel, it might cause bleeding that would be very difficult to stop.

Dr Tung and his team conclude surgery successfully after six hours

While the operation was lengthy, the patient did not lose much blood and the surgical area did not need to be drained. H.D.R. responded well and did not experience any issues, including temporary facial paralysis, after surgery. By the evening of the same day, the patient was awake and able to see his family. When he was re-examined the next day, the patient’s incision looked good and exhibited little swelling.

While H.D.R. was in recovery, his mother shared her thoughts and feelings with the FV team. “When my son had an accident, we were extremely panicked, but Dr Tung took time to reassure us and share details about the treatment he proposed. The doctors and medical staff at FV are very kind and professional. Thanks to them, my child has returned to a normal life. Thank you, thank you very much.”

Usually, the recovery time for a bone injury case is four to six months. However, because H.D.R.’s injuries were quite complicated, it was necessary to fix the jaw to stabilise his bite. One fortunate thing in this case: because the patient is only 16 years old, his bones are still growing so have the ability to recover faster. After one week, H.D.R. was able to remove the structure fixed to his jaw and practice facial movements and continued to progress well.

Postoperative CT scan of patient H.D.R.

H.D.R.’s father shared: “FV Hospital is very different to other hospitals we have visited in Vietnam. In addition to state-of-the-art facilities and dedicated medical team, we also received a warm welcome from reception staff. In the process of treating my son, we went through many difficult psychological periods, but fortunately we received lots of emotional support from FV’s professionals. Now, we are happy and relieved to see the results of H.D.R.’s treatment.”

This is not the first time that H.D.R.’s family has placed their trust in FV Hospital. Previously, H.D.R.’s mother delivered two children here, in 2007 and 2010, respectively. H.D.R. also visited FV for treatment 10 years ago, and his hospital records still contain photos from this time where he was six years old. Over time, this family has developed complete confidence in FV Hospital doctors.

Nguyen Thanh Tung, MD, PhD, Head of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery, Dental Surgery Department of FV Hospital. Dr Tung performed surgery on H.D.R.

In addition to treating dental and maxillofacial trauma, FV Hospital’s Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery, Dental Surgery Department, also examines and treats oral and maxillofacial diseases, tumours and jaw cysts, and provides orthodontic treatment and care. This department also provides cosmetic jaw surgery, V-line face shaping, and dental care for patients after radiation therapy. As with all hospital departments, a strict infection control and medical safety process is deployed to JCI international standards to ensure the dental clinic and operating room environment is absolutely sterile.

Above all, FV Hospital employs a team of well-trained, professional, dedicated surgeons, consultants, technicians and nurses to care for patients while deliver the best treatment outcomes possible.

Contact FV Hospital’s hotline (028) 54113435 for consultation and treatment at Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery, Dental Surgery Department.