Mandibular fractures are one of the most frequent traumatic injuries treated by oral and maxillofacial surgeons. These fractures result from a multitude of causes, including sports injuries, motor vehicle accidents, falls, and interpersonal violence. Training in the management of mandibular fractures includes various techniques, depending on the surgeon’s specialty and training, location, and geographical preferences. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons have a unique perspective in the treatment of these injuries due to their dental training and intimate knowledge of the occlusion and stomatognathic system.
This issue reviews the relevant anatomy and decision making for the multitude of techniques utilized in the contemporary treatment of these injuries, ranging from closed reduction to open procedures. Due to the popularity and widespread acceptance by surgeons and patients for the intraoral monocortical techniques, two articles are included that discuss the versatility and limitations of this method. Indications for extraoral approaches and bicortical plating techniques are reviewed in another article. Special techniques that have been reemerging with commercially available dedicated systems for extraoral pin fixation are reviewed in another article. Newer techniques, including the endoscopically assisted management of condylar fractures, are introduced as well. Finally, an article on special considerations in the treatment of children and a review of the common complications occurring with the management of mandibular fractures is presented.
It is the hope of the authors and myself that this issue of Atlas of the Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Clinics of North America will become a resource for residents in training and practicing surgeons treating patients with mandibular trauma. I would like to thank all my colleagues who participated in this project and, of course, my wife Nicea for her endless support and tolerance.