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In Memory of Professor Per-Ingvar Brånemark

Today millions of men and women can smile with pride thanks to Professor Brånemark − what a legacy. Upon hearing the news of his passing, I felt a great loss both professionally and personally. My sincere condolences go out to the Brånemark family. Although we are saddened, we must celebrate this exceptional man for his innovative mind and his tireless work that forever changed the course of dentistry worldwide. Professor Brånemark literally ushered in the age of “Implant Dentistry” by legitimizing the once maligned therapy through scientific studies that accurately documented the benefits of “Osseointegration” in oral rehabilitation. I first met Professor Brånemark at an oral surgery symposium in Canada in the late 1990’s where he gave a presentation in the morning and I followed with a presentation in the afternoon. I was beyond honored and my wish was to meet Professor Brånemark and get a photograph with him if possible. We briefly shook hands, but nothing more. A few years later, our paths crossed at an author’s dinner hosted by Quintessence publishing. I did not expect Professor Brånemark to remember me, but he did. He asked me and my wife to join him at his table. He said he wanted to make up for not having any time to talk in Canada. And so I learned – not only a brilliant doctor and accomplished researcher, but a true gentleman as well. In short order, he began to quiz my knowledge regarding the science and clinical applications of osseointegration. He corrected me when I used the term “Implant” instead of “fixture” and that implants were synonymous with tissue grafts. I shared with him how osseointegration had allowed me to help so many suffering patients and how this work had profoundly added purpose to my life. I was inspired by both Professor Brånemark’s genius and his humbleness. I believe that his spirit will forever guide those who continue to apply his scientific innovations. His ground-breaking work will live on for generations and for that we are all deeply grateful.

Anthony G. Sclar OMFS

Miami, Florida

 

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