October 8, 1973

Relationship Between Medicine and Dentistry

Author Affiliations

Port Jervis, NY

JAMA. 1973;226(2):199-200. doi:10.1001/jama.1973.03230020045024

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To the Editor.—  I like to emphasize the necessity of closer cooperation between physician and dentist when it comes to diagnosing and treating disturbances of that region of the human body that should be the domain of members of both these medical sciences. Today's dentist is a medical specialist, not legally though, but de facto for sure. He has been for thousands of years. Yet, dentistry is still a stepchild of the profession. Dr. Charles Mayo once said: "It may be going too far to say that dentists should be doctors of medicine, but certainly all dentists should know more about the practice of medicine and all physicians should know more about dentistry."Much the physicians, generally speaking, know about dentistry is probably self-taught, often not learned in medical school or in postgraduate courses or from books. The other day I looked into a book entitled Surgery of the Alimentary