Institute of Stomatology, Riga Stradins University

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About Clinic of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery


The history of oral and maxillofacial surgery in Latvia dates back to the Department of Dentistry, Faculty of Medicine of the University of Latvia, as the founder of the department Kārlis Barons taught the subject of surgery of oral cavity there. He is considered as the founder of dental surgery in Latvia. Upon the suggestions of professor K.Barons, in 1936 inpatient hospital was established. Within the first year after the establishment, it had been led by professor Jānis Šulcs, whereas, till 1944- by K.barons. At end of the war, in 1944 the Department of Surgical Stomatology was established with Clinic of Stomatology as the clinical base.

Assistant professor Ida Leja (1906-1976) was the first head of the department, followed by professor Vladimirs Āronsons (1896-1960), assistant professor Astra Lināre (1922-2010) and professor Indulis Bākulis (1922-1976).

Professor Andrejs Skaģers had been the head of the department from 1978 till 2013. After the establishment of the Institute of Stomatology he also became the head of the Clinic of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. Today professor continues his work at the department and has been elected chair of the Senate.

Under the leadership of professor A.Skaģers, the department and the clinic have experienced development, as he contributed to the strengthening of the speciality of oral and maxillofacial surgery. Besides, competent professionals have been prepared, four of them- Ilze Akota, Andris Bīgestāns, Gunārs Lauskis, Ģirts Šalms- after passing of international examination became the members of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh.

Within the period of past ten years, the following disciplines have experienced rapid growth: dental implantology, bone tissue deficiency replacement surgery, orthognatic surgery, surgical treatment of sleep apnea, endoscopic examination and treatment of salivary glands and other methods related to the application of contemporary technologies- laser surgery, radio frequency and piezosurgery.

Currently, the clinic cooperates with the following university clinics: Rostock, Karolinska, Malmo, Gothenburg, Umea, Helsinki, Oulu, Cardiff, Toronto, Lyon and others. Traditionally, good cooperation has been established with the colleagues from the clinics of Kaunas, Vilnius, Tartu and Tallinn, which are also members of the Baltic Association of Maxillofacial and Plastic Surgery.

It is essential to single out long-lasting cooperation with Bioengineering Laboratory of Rīga Technical University in research of biomaterials, RSU Institute of Anatomy and Anthropology in research of growth factors and RSU Scientific Laboratory of Molecular Genetics in research of mutation of candidate genes for congenital clefts and their mutual interaction with the environment. Alongside with the mentioned above, clinical researches on dental implants, treatment of sleep apnea and congenital clefts and other deformations have been carried out.

Since autumn 2013, professor Ilze Akota has been elected the head of the clinic and the department. She is a vice-president of Baltic Association of Oral, Maxillofacial and Plastic Surgery and active member of various international professional education and science-related associations. Professor's scientific interests are related to congenital facial clefts, their epidemiology, reconstructive surgery, the role of growth factors in pathogenesis of congenital clefts and genetic researches. Previously, as a dean and vice-rector for education, professor Ilze Akota has greatly contributed to the organization of study process within the university.

The work carried out at the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery is closely related to the work of the clinic. The team of highly motivated professionals has always been the main value of this structural unit.