Patient Care

Dental hygiene student Kabrie Weber (center back) and dental therapy student Phonsuda Chanthavisouk (far right) make rounds at U of M Medical Center with their medical and pharmacy counterparts. Cyndee Stull (far left) coordinates the program.

Our dental hygiene and dental therapy students are now embedded in hospital rounding teams as part of an initiative to create a more integrated approach to in-patient care. 

Funded by a BOLD Ideas grant from the Office of Academic and Clinical Affairs, the initiative brings together students and faculty from medicine and oral health to assess and treat hospital patients more holistically and learn from one another. 

Dr. Donald Nixdorf

Last year, more than 2,000 new patients turned to the School of Dentistry’s TMD, Orofacial Pain, and Dental Sleep Medicine Clinic for answers to undiagnosed conditions and relief from life altering pain.

Victoria Gokee

When Victoria Gokee completes her Doctor of Dental Surgery degree at the University of Minnesota in two years, she is headed home to the southern shores of Lake Superior where she grew up surrounded by a large extended family and fellow members of the Red Cliff Tribe of Ojibwe.

Stephen Shuman, DDS, MS

An interprofessional team at the University of Minnesota has received a five-year, $3.74 million grant from the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration to improve the healthcare and health of Minnesota’s older adults through education and community partnerships. Collaborators include the Medical School, School of Dentistry, the Community University Health Care Center, the University of Minnesota Schools of Nursing, Public Health and Physical Therapy, the College of Pharmacy, and Fairview Health Services.

Connor Peck, DDS

While some dentists may choose to avoid a career treating patients with chronic pain, Connor Peck, DDS, recognizes the potential rewards of giving hope and relief to those who suffer.

As a second-year resident in the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry’s orofacial pain and temporomandibular joint disorder master’s program, he is gaining vast experience diagnosing and treating the most perplexing patients and is delighted with his choice.

Jenny Enich

With just 39 students in her high school graduating class, Jennifer Enich could play any varsity sport she wanted, beginning in eighth grade. There were no try-outs and everyone was encouraged to participate.

“The opportunities and the encouragement were huge,” said Enich, who grew up in Side Lake, Minnesota, and attended Chisholm High School. “I am who I am today because of the people in my small community.”

Tamara Doege

Interprofessional Approach to Diagnosis and Treatment is Key

Tamara Doege felt hope slipping away after three years of debilitating facial pain. The pain had become acute following brain surgeries to address a bone malformation.

But after the surgeries, the once active and outgoing mother of three spent weeks in the hospital enduring follow-up procedures and later at home missing precious family functions and much of her youngest child’s high school years. 

Al Imhoff

Al Imhoff’s four-unit bridge prosthetic is celebrating its 50th birthday this month. He had his bridge installed in 1969 at the University of Minnesota Dental Clinic in the old Owre Hall on the east bank of the Twin Cities campus.

Gretchen Kletscher

Fourth-year DDS student Gretchen Kletscher grew up living on the Mississippi River in Brainerd, Minnesota. Today she’s eager to return to a lifestyle where she knows her neighbors and has access to great fishing and the other outdoor activities she loves.

Alyssa Hedstrom, DDS and Jessica Lettelleir

School of Dentistry student Jessica Lettelleir is spending three weeks of her summer break in tiny Gilbert, Minnesota, building her skills under the supervision of Dr. Witney Cobby, DMD.

This summer, 18 School of Dentistry students like Lettelleir are serving patients in rural communities, mentored by dentists in private practice.

The Minnesota Collaborative Rural Oral Health Project program aims to expand access to care in underserved rural Minnesota communities by introducing emerging providers to rural life and practice.

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