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Fall 2019 Newsletter: News from Schools

Washington | Cleveland | West Virginia

University of Washington School of Dentistry

Graduate Program Director, Oral Medicine: Dr. David Dean

Department Chair – Dr. Mark Drangsholt

Calendar of upcoming events:

November 1, 2019 – Oral Medicine Special Event Honoring Distinguished Faculty: event to celebrate the retirements of Drs. Edmond Truelove, Linda LeResche, Mark Schubert, and Earl Sommers.

  • Dr. Edmond Truelove - Retirement/Professor Emeritus status (July 1, 2019) – Founder of the Oral Medicine Department at UW, Chair of Department (1972-2010), Chief of Clinical Services (2010-present).
  • Dr. Linda LeResche - Retirement/Professor Emeritus status (July 1, 2019) – Professor & Associate Dean for Research
  • Dr. Mark Schubert - Retirement/Professor Emeritus status (March 1, 2019) – Professor & Founder/Medical Director of Oral Medicine Service at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance
  • Dr. Earl Sommers – Retirement/Professor Emeritus status (July 1, 2019) – Clinical Professor

Outgoing/incoming residents:

  • Incoming Residents – Drs. Fawaz Hatem, Gale Sebastian, and Jung Song.

Awards of the Department/School:

Dr. Bea Gandara – Washington State Dental Association’s Citizen of the Year

Career info or open positions in oral medicine/other disciplines:

  • Our department has just opened a search for a new Graduate Program Director

Information provided by Dr. David Dean

Case Western Reserve and Cleveland Clinic Health Education Campus

Professor and Program DirectorProfessor of Medicine
Professor of Otolaryngology
CWRU, School of Medicine
Milda Chmieliauskaite DMD, MPH
Assistant Professor of Oral Medicine
Rui Amaral Mendes DMD, PHD
Adjunct Professor of Oral Medicine


Calendar of upcoming events:

  • October 30, 2019 – Our department will host Dr. Todd Erikson, a specialist in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology, to give a public seminar on implant radiological considerations.
  • November 2, 2019 – Dr. Pinto will speak to the Northeast Ohio Sjögren's Patient support group on oral complications of SS. Ohio ranks among the top ten support groups on SS in the United States.
  • November 9, 2019 – The Health Education Campus is featuring the 2019 AAOM Fall meeting.
Download the AAOM 2019 Fall Meeting Flyer

Outgoing/incoming residents:

Internship in Oral Medicine

Our program currently has three interns, one enrolled in an MSc in Dentistry, (with focus in Oral Medicine and Radiology). We also have three research assistants working with us, and have 1–2 positions open for January 2020.

Awards of any member of your Department/School:

  • Dr. Chmieliauskaite was selected to participate in CWRU’s Stair Mentors Fellowship Program, design to pair senior and junior faculty for guidance on research methods and compliance monitoring.
  • Dr. Pinto was featured in the October issue, Cleveland Magazine, in the Cleveland Top Dentists listing.

Brief scientific information about new discoveries and breakthroughs related with oral medicine or other disciplines, in your school/department:

  • Drs. Milda Chmieliauskaite and Rui Amaral Mendes are active in multinational research on pain patient reported outcomes and position statements on the management of ONJ. Both collaborations resulted in papers published in 2019.
  • Dr. Pinto collaborated on a cohort study that concluded that increasing salivary flow on its own might not be sufficient to control caries in Sjögren's patients.

West Virginia University School of Dentistry

From left to right: Brooke Dolin, Nick Balash, and Parvati Gopalan, D3 students 

If we have learned one thing about West Virginia University, it is that we as Mountaineers are fiercely loyal not just to our football team but also to the citizens of our state. A number of oral health disparities exist in our state and actually prevent patients from receiving comprehensive dental care. The curriculum at W.V.U. focuses on recognizing these disparities and we work closely with our faculty to give patients the best possible care, one that involves patient education. Our courses are designed to make us think critically so that we are improving a patient’s oral health, as well as their overall health.

West Virginia consistently ranks among the highest percentage of tobacco users in the nation. In an effort to combat that statistic, our university has an accredited Tobacco Treatment Training Program. The program is designed to help providers understand the science behind addiction, inform patients of the consequences of tobacco usage and provide effective individualized treatment for each patient. Since West Virginia University is the only dental school in the state, even as student dentist providers, there is a huge responsibility placed on us to provide quality dental care and have a lasting positive impact on our patients—one that involves a smile.

Last year, my classmates and I attended an American Student Dental Association (ASDA) District 6 meeting in Columbus, Ohio. Students from the University of Louisville told us about a March Madness fundraising idea that was a hit at their school and we decided to try it at our school. This past March we held a “Tournament of Tails” event on social media. People registered their pet for $2 and pets would compete on Facebook and Instagram for the most number of “likes”. You could also buy 10 “likes” for $1. We had a total of 15 pets compete and managed to raise $1,814! Since March also happens to be Oral Health Awareness month, we thought it would be appropriate to donate the money to our university’s Tobacco Cessation Fund.

After consulting with Dr. Susan Morgan, a huge advocate for the state’s tobacco cessation efforts, third year dental students at our ASDA chapter decided to use the money to purchase various tobacco cessation products and create “trial packs” of products for patients. The packs will contain a combination of gum, lozenges and patches. Patients will be counseled on the most effective way to use each product and can then determine what works best for him/her. We will be holding the “Tournament of Tails” event again next March and hope to use the funds from that event to purchase Bacc-off. We are able to use the tobacco cessation products not just in our clinic but also while volunteering at community health fairs across the state.

My peers and I are filled with gratitude to finally be at a point in our education to experience a patient’s progression through dental treatment. We are motivated by the fact that we have the potential to change a patient’s oral habits and educate them on the benefits of a smoke-free lifestyle. Our goal will always be to help build a brighter future for the citizens of our state.

Nick Balash
Brooke Dolin
Parvati Gopalan
D3 students
WVU School of Dentistry