Almost One Year Post-op Double Jaw Surgery for a Large Underbite :) - Selden, NY

My experience- I had been debating this surgery...

My experience- I had been debating this surgery for years and when i turned 20 i talked to my mom about wanting to learn about it more. We made an appointment with my orthodontist and that was the first step. I had to wear braces and believe me as a 20 year old in college thats the last thing i wanted but I was all in for this and wanted to just get it started. After wearing the braces I had to get all 4 of my wisdom teeth removed and believe me that was TOUGHHHH!!! But that was something that passed fast and i was eating a day later. Then I met my surgeons and was blown away. These 2 men helped me make a life changing decision and I owe them alot. Along with an incredibly funny worker in their office named Greg who over the months of visiting my parents and i came very close with. Before the surgery Dr. Capuano asked me If I wanted to take a special xray that would allow the doctors to perform the surgery digitally on my face before they even performed it on me for real. I chose to do it and I was not forced to whatsoever. Im glad I did because they performed the surgery digitally and knew excatly how they wanted to perform the surgery now in incredible detail. It was pretty amazing. So my surgery day came and I was focused. BIGGEST THING IS YOU HAVE TO BE READY. If your not just wait. This is something that will take all of your being and you need to be 100% ready to consider such a surgery. My surgery finished in alittle over an hour which was incredibly fast thanks to the special xray i took :) The quickness of the surgery allowed me have not as much swelling as well which was a plus.

I stayed in the hospital for 2 days and believe me it is tough. I barely drank much cause i wasnt hungry and didnt want to get nausuas. The first 2 days were very much a hell having your jaws wired shut and barley being able to breath is not easy.

I remained focused though and after 2 days i went home. This was such a relief as I really just wasnted my own bed at this point. I was still in pain but to be honest the swelling in general was the toughest part. I just wanted to be able to breathe easier. But the doctor said within 2 weeks you lose half the swelling which i did and was VERY thankful for. The first weeks were tough getting used to not eating and sleeping upright and all. But once I got used to it it wasnt so bad. I blended berries, cereal, muffins anything that was tastey and really never felt deprived of food while eating through a syringe. I alsoh ave a postive outlook on life and a "it can always be worst" mindset so that certainly helps :) ...2 weeks later i started to leave the house, going to stores, walking the track just doing what i could to feel alittle back to normal. Although embarrassing in public with my chipmunk face haha...A couple weeks later I felt really completely normal just aside from not being able to eat still. Oh, i lost 25 pounds but gained it back quick so dont worry its not hard to maintain the weight...During these weeks i was regularly seeing Dr. Gish and Dr. Capuano and they were a great relief to just hear that i was making progress. As the weeks went by i lived my life normal I even (AND I DONT RECOMMEND THIS) went to 6 flags with my friend 6 weeks post-op and road all the rides! haha...Looking back that probably wasnt safe but I just wanted to enjoy my summer finally! I occasionally went to the beach and basically did everything I normally did just not eating, which sucked when i went to barbecues and had to watch everyone eat haha....8 weeks later I was finally told I could get the wires cut, YESSSS! I was alittle swollen but ya know I could open my mouth! barely for the first few days but it was still an amazing feeling. I feeling of accomplishment and a feeling of never having to think about this again. 4 weeks after my wires were cut I met my beautiful girlfriend and the rest is history! Very happy and very ready for the next chapter in my life! :)

Pros:
-life changing
-because you need braces you get a nice smile :)
-improved facial looks
-avoiding future issues over overusing back teeth
-more proportional face
-confidence boost
-incredible doctors and staff
-incredible nurses! (MAKE SURE YOU STAY IN A SINGLE PERSON ROOM IF YOU CAN WITH ONE ON ONE ATTENTION)

Cons-
-Process is very difficult at the beginning and takes alot of will power
-my nose is alittle different, not a huge con but I kinda liked my old nose shape more. defiantly ass the doctor if he plans to touch your nose in anyway!
-weight lose
-jaw wired shut
-swelling
-first 2 days
-braces, retainer

Hope I could help someone out there! :) willing to answers any questions!

just more post-op photos!!

One Year!!!

I am officially just over a year since my surgery! Its been a long journey but wow this last year went fast! haha I have a new job, finishing up college this year and am living a great life :) I have no side effects or any issues from my surgery now a year later and that alone is a blessing. I apologize for not smiling in my pictures but believe me I am happy :P haha
Dr. Gish, Dr. Capuano

my doctors were incredible; Two men that live and breath what they do. Incredibly knowledgeable and very nice people. Dr. Capuano actually had a similar surgery to mine as a young teen so that connection meant alot to me because he knew what I would be going through. These doctors really care about their patients and i owe them alot!!!! :)

4 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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Comments (13)

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Oh no!  Why no smile? :(  Can't you take another picture smiling for us, pretty please?
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Hello! Thank you for your post! Do you remember that special test, was it a 3D computer planning where you could actually see how your faces would be changed? Why did you have 2 surgeons, usually there is one surgeon and an assistant. What hospital did you stay at? Thank you.
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Hello, the special test consisted of me simply sitting in a chair and having an X-ray machine take a 360 x-ray of my head. I dont know the exact details of the scan but essentially it allowed my doctors to know exactly how they were going to perform my surgery before my surgery date. It was a scan that is new and I was told I was their first patient to ever to it and they said it was such a great decision. I had 2 doctors but Dr. Capuano was the main surgeon. I worked with them both since my first appointment so it was nice for me to always have 2 opinions on the matter. I stayed at St. Charles in Port jeff, New York. The staff was amazing and really played a huge role in my first few days being alittle easier.
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Great story! I'm 20 as well with a large underbite.... And looking at getting mine fixed as well... The main thing that I'm wondering is how long did you have to have the braces prior to and post surgery? Thanks, Taylor
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Hey sorry for the delay, I had my braces for 1 year pre-op but the ending results were awesome they look great! I had the braces post-op for 5 months and I still wear a night retainer which is no big deal at all. Hope that helps and good luck with making your decision!
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Thanks for sharing your story. Definitely your after pics look amazing. You got symmetry of your face, both front and side views. As I understood you did that both for aesthetic and medical reasons. Did you talk to orthodontists before or you were looking simply for plastic surgeons?
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Yes I did it for both. I spoke to my orthodontist before anyone. I had a ling conversation with him with my mother and discussed my options. Essentially he told if I left my jaw as is I would have increased sunken cheeks, premature aging of my face as well as problems with my back molars as i got older and jaw pain as well. So with all those factors as well as just wanting to have a normal bite, I decided to go along and do it. And thank you so much for the compliments :)
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Thanks for posting your review, your results are amazing! I know what you mean about not wanting braces at 20, I had mine put on at 24 so I can totally relate. You sound like you were really determined and committed to the process though which is very admirable. Judging by your results it looks like it was all worth it. Glad to see you got the smile and the girl :) I can't believe they wired you shut for 8 weeks! I would have gone crazy! I give you major credit for pushing through that. I'm so happy to hear how supportive your surgeons were, that makes a huge difference. How long did it take for you to regain full feeling? Im so nervous that I won't get feeling back in my lower lip or chin.
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Thank you so much! :) I truly believe staying committed to the process is so key, not everyone can do it if your not in the right mindset. Braces for sure were a bummer but well worth it afterwards!! Being wired shut for 8 weeks certainly was challenging but I always kept telling myself that my situation could always be worst and to never feel bad for myself. I know you have been through a very long journey, were you ever wired shut?...My surgeons were so key to my whole process, I know your going through an ordeal with your surgeon and you are such an inspiration in the way you have dealt with it. To offer him an opportunity to simply take the time to bring attention to the medical conditions was so admirable of you. I really would like to give him a piece of my mind for you for the way he dealt with your offer! Continue to stay strong because you are a very pretty girl and good things will without a doubt come for you....As far as my feeling in my face, I forgot to mention this in my review, essentially i started to get the pins and needles 3 weeks after surgery. Then i started to have itches in my face but scratching them only made them worst for awhile which was tough >.< ....Probably 6 weeks after the surgery i regained most if not all of my feeling. I still have a slight tingle in my right cheek sometimes but its nothing major whatsoever. the inside of my upper jaw where it was split in half during surgery I regained full feeling back maybe 2 months ago so that took awhile which was expected. I hope that could help you:) I am really pulling for you and know that a positive will come from all this when you look back on it years from now!!:)
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Sounds like you had a great attitude about the whole thing. I was never wired. I was supposed to wear a splint for two weeks and then be banded shut. I ended up having to wear the splint for 5 weeks though because they made extra breaks in my upper jaw. I also needed grafting so it was too complicated to put the bands on. By the time the 5 weeks was up the doctor realized he would have to remove the 6 front teeth and jaw bone so they weren't even worried about my bite at that point. I can't image being wired through all that. I don't think I could have handled it. Thanks for all the support :) it's really nice to read your story and hear about someone having such positive results.
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Congratulations!  And thank you so much for sharing your experience with us here on RealSelf.  Your before/after profile pictures are amazing.  What a huge difference.  Were you chipping your front teeth and the like from your underbite?  Could you tell us exactly what your pre-braces and pre-surgery diagnosis was (the malocclusion and other issues?)  Also, did insurance cover the full amount?

We have one young woman right now who is in the middle of a long, drawn-out ordeal with her jaw surgery.  Her name is Chelie.  I don't know whether your experience was anything like hers--her aftermath is certainly nothing like yours.  But she's very nice and very interesting as well.  Very strong.  You can go check out her review if you'd like :).

Thank you for offering to answer questions!
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Thank you so much! :) I am glad to help if it does to anyone in anyway! 1.) As far as chipping my front teeth pre surgery I never seemed to have that problem. My front teeth never touched my bottom front teeth at all since after i turned about 15. I just was overusing my back molars when chewing which would have had an effect on my teeth as i got older. 2.) My pre surgery,braces diagnosis was a large underbite as well an upper jaw that had to be split in half and made wider and also straightened out because it was slanted to a degree. my teeth were also positioned opposite of how they should have been; My upper teeth were on the inside of my lower teeth which is why the widening was needed for my upper jaw. 3.) Insurance did cover most of the amount. My parents still make monthly payments but I know it is only a few thousand that they owe.
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Thank you! :D
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