The Era of Global Medical Services
koreatimes :: 더페이스치과

SNS medical treatment, which eliminates the threshold of hospital, leads global medical services

Twice cranioplastry in Brazil, Orthodontics and in China, Orthognathic surgery and facial bone contouring surgery in Korean oral surgery

It is probably around 2014 that I received the first message. At that time, I didn’t actively use SNS, but I used it occasionally to share information about oral surgery diseases and operation and to use it to scrap foreign cases. Foreign friends who found that I’m an oral and maxillofacial surgeon began to ask about their condition in messages. It was the case that they didn’t get the right help in their country or they were not satisfied with their chin correction surgery. The facial bone structure of Asians and Westerners is a little different, so their preferred face type and operation method are different. Westerners, for example, are more likely to require genioplasty while Korean are more likely to apply orthognathic surgery. However, one thing to be certain is that the right function of facial bone and teeth should be considered beforehand.

Julia, who has recently undergone surgery, is also contacted by SNS. She was born in Brazil, and she was born with a congenital craniofacial abnormality which is called Crouzon syndrome. She has already undergone twice plastic surgery in Brail, which is considered to be a medical advanced country, but it was only possible to cure large abnormalities. It was difficult to say that it was aesthetically and functionally successful operations.

Julia, who is currently living in Brazil and China because of her father’s job, is receiving orthodontic treatment in China. Most of the consultation and communication took place through SNS. I consulted her carefully by receiving the local medical treatment record, CT, X-ray materials through e-mail. My physical distance with her was not a big problem. However, there was a lot of trouble until I decided her surgery. She has an inherited disease that can be challenged during anesthesia. Also, her current facial deformity alone made the surgery difficult. I tried to devise way to have safer surgical procedures and methods with anesthesiologists.

Through several e-mails, exchange of opinions through SNS, and one hospital visit, I learned all the required materials for consultation and surgery and proceeded surgery in the next appointment. It was a big surgery to graft the hip bones into the center of the mid-face with orthognathic surgery to move the jawbone, but the operation was smoothly progressed owe to the tight bond between Julia and her family. Two weeks later, she was able to go home with her family, and now she is continuing her studies with monitoring the condition over time and orthodontic treatment after surgery in China.

There is no border in treating patients and having surgery. However, due to the nature of facial bone surgery, it is important to take into consideration that the treatment and surgery cannot be performed overnight. Also, since patients can’t stay in Korea for a long time, the doctor should get as much information as possible while patients are in their country before they come to Korea. The doctor can exchange enough opinions and data through email and messenger. The development of SNS improved the convenience of patient consultation by breaking the border of medical service. Still, there is still a problem to be solved in treating overseas patients. Understanding ethnicity and cultural differences and approaching their standards for beauty should be considered more for the future.

Dr. Lee Joong-kyou from The Face Dental clinic

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