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November 11, 1974

Nonremoval of Dentures During Anesthesia

Author Affiliations

Hahnemann Medical College Philadelphia

JAMA. 1974;230(6):822. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03240060012006

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To the Editor.—  In answer to Dr. David Vernon Thomas's plea for others to present their experiences in nonremoval of dentures during surgical anesthesia, I can only say "Amen."I have been following the same plan as Dr. Thomas during approximately the last 14 years, and I, too, have seen many benefits from leaving dentures in place. In fact, we have seen a number of patients who could not maintain the patency of their upper airway without their dentures in situ. It would be surely a mistake to remove the dentures from such a patient, and then render him unable to clear his airway by a depressant drug.Whether or not dentures should be removed during anesthesia and surgery should depend on a careful individual analysis of each situation, and there are very few indications for their removal other than actual oral surgery itself. My experience, like Dr. Thomas's, has