The Beginning of Springtime at MedCenter

auvenshines-faceMarch is another busy month for Dr. Pettit and me. It is an eventful month because we both have birthdays in March. Personally, I am celebrating- as the famous comedian Jack Benny always said- “the anniversary of my 39th birthday”. I’m not saying how many anniversaries I’ve had since I was 39, but who’s keeping score, right?

The month of March begins for us with the Houston Dental Conference which is called the Star of the South. It will be held from the 2nd through the 4th of March at the George R. Brown Convention Center. The following weekend Dr. Pettit and I will travel to New Orleans to participate in a two-day gathering of the Parker Mahan Study Club Annual Meeting. Dr. Mahan was my professor when I was a student at the Emory University School of Dentistry. He is the person that I credit as my mentor in this field. I was extremely fortunate to do research with Dr. Mahan as a student. From that experience, Dr. Mahan became a lifelong friend and advisor. He is the one that encouraged me to pursue a PhD in anatomy. He helped me direct my practice toward the treatment of TMD and Orofacial Pain.

Much of what Dr. Mahan did for me, I am now passing on to Dr. Pettit. Dr. Pettit is a rising star in the field of TMD and Orofacial Pain nationally. I have had the privilege to be his mentor and friend for the past five years. Dr. Pettit has excelled in every aspect of his training. At this point, I trust him explicitly with of all our patients and in the administration of the necessary and appropriate care that they will receive. I strongly recommended that you meet and visit with Dr. Pettit if you haven’t already done so. I think that you will find him to be the caring and concerned doctor that you deserve for continued care and management of your temporomandibular disorder.

We will have several staff members who will be taking vacations during the month of March so that they can enjoy spring break vacation with their children. This spring I am excited about having been asked to give a Memorial lecture at Washington University School of Graduate Dental Studies in St. Louis, Missouri on April 12th.

I’m in the midst of presenting an eight-hour course on the Physiology of Occlusion and Biomechanics of Joint Movement to the graduate students at the University of Texas School of Dentistry. This is always a fun project for me. I have been doing in these lectures for a number of years and have been an adjunct professor at the Dental School for 38 years. It is a pleasure teaching young dentists the skills necessary for diagnosing and treating jaw problems and bad bites.

I am currently in the “initial talking phase” for greater participation in the Pain Clinic at LSU School of Dentistry in New Orleans. This is a project which Dr. Gremillion, the Dean of the Dental School, and I have had for a number of years. We are now very close to being able to create a TMJ treatment center in the Medical Center in New Orleans. I will not be moving to New Orleans, but I am certainly open to helping him get the clinic off the ground and work out the logistics for patient flow and care. This is something that I will do in addition to my normal work here in Houston. This also gives me an opportunity to spread the news to a more regional audience and to help dentists in the Louisiana area treat more complicated patients.

I am by no way retiring, so please don’t feel that I will be leaving the practice. I love what I do here and thoroughly enjoy working with Dr. Pettit. I will continue to work at MedCenter TMJ so long as there are patients who need my expertise.

As you can see we are always busy here at MedCenter TMJ. We are continuously learning as much as we can about of temporomandibular disorders and orofacial pain so that we can deliver the best care in the United States. I am proud of what we do here and I am thrilled with the association I have with Dr. Pettit. We will continue to work diligently to give you the best service and care anywhere in this wonderful country.

Ronald C. Auvenshine, DDS, PhD
Diplomate, American Board of Orofacial Pain

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