At the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, our distinguished doctors and researchers have been at the forefront of our specialty by pioneering treatments, training world-renowned physicians and exploring new directions. Today, our experts continue to develop new breakthroughs to benefit oral and maxillofacial patients here and worldwide.

  • 1869 - James E. Garretson appointed “Oral Surgeon” at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP). Widely considered the “father of oral surgery,” Dr. Garretson’s work launched Penn’s significant role in our specialty. 
  • 1878 - Penn’s School of Dental Medicine opened
  • 1897 - Matthew H. Cryer, who studied under Dr. Garretson, became Chair of Oral Surgery at the Dental School and founded the nation’s first complete hospital dental service at Philadelphia General Hospital. 
  • Post-1918 - During World War I, Robert H. Ivy, Cryer’s nephew, treated many maxillofacial injuries. He then established Penn’s Department of Maxillofacial Surgery, for dental students and community dentists. Dr. Ivy later developed interdisciplinary treatment of cleft palates in children. 
  • Post-1945 - Penn began a 3-year program of scientific and clinical training in oral surgery, longer and more comprehensive than other institutions’ programs. 
  • 1952-1974 - Claude S. LaDow, DDS, directed Penn’s Oral and Maxillofacial Training Programs and was chief at both Presbyterian and Episcopal Hospitals. His work focused on managing tumors and prolonging the quality of life. 
  • 1974 - Louis Guernsey, DDS, became Professor and Chairman of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. He expanded Penn’s teaching programs to maximize residents’ clinical experiences. 
  • 1982- As department chair, Barry H. Hendler, DDS, MD, created interdisciplinary hospital rotations and an integrated 6-year DMD, MD program. Dr. Hendler pioneered techniques in soft tissue laser surgery and temporomandibular joint laser arthroscopy. 
  • 1992-2012- Peter D. Quinn, DMD, MD, chaired the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and Hospital Dentistry at HUP. He oversaw construction of a faculty practice center at HUP and surgical facility at the Dental School. New practices and facilities opened at Penn Medicine at Radnor, OMS/Cosmetic Surgery Associates at Plymouth Meeting, Penn Dental Network-School of Dental Medicine, and Penn Presbyterian. Full-time faculty expanded and patient visits increased from 11,000 to 21,000 annually. Dr. Quinn also developed the only FDA-approved total joint prosthesis for the temporomandibular joint.
  • 2012-present- Anh D. Le, DDS, PhD, named Chair of the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. She was a tenured professor in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and Orthodontics at the University of Southern California’s Ostrow School of Dentistry. At USC, Dr. Le worked to isolate and characterize adult stem cells from gingival tissue, a discovery that she patented. 
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