When 17-year-old Ashiq Gavai went to the hospital with a swollen jaw, he could never have imagined the reason behind it. Neither had the doctors.
Doctors at Sir JJ Hospital in Byculla, who had suspected abnormal teeth growth and suggested a surgery, were in for a surprise when they discovered 232 teeth in Ashiq’s mouth during the operation, on Monday.
They surgically removed the teeth after a six-hour surgery.
“We searched medical literature and found doctors across the world have only removed 10 to 15 teeth. Ours is a world record, the condition is extremely rare in the lower jaw,” said Dr Sunanda Dhivare Palwankar, head of the dental surgery department at the hospital.
It was only about a month ago, when Ashiq, a Class 10 student, complained of swelling on his right mandible (chin bone under the jaw line).
“It was not painful, but his face appeared disfigured and hence, we decided to see a doctor,” said his father Suresh, a labourer in Buldhana district in Maharashtra.
However, doctors could not diagnose the problem. The swelling looked like a tumour. “We went to five hospitals before coming to Mumbai. The x-ray reports showed some teeth-like structures, but no one was willing to operate on it,” added his father.
Ashiq came to Sir JJ Hospital on June 26 from Aurangabad. “We looked at his medical reports and suspected abnormal teeth growth. This condition is called complex composite odontom, where the teeth grow abnormally, causing a swelling. But we had no clarity on the number of teeth until we opened the jaw for surgery,” said Dr Vandana Thorwade, ENT Surgeon, JJ Hospital.
Worried that the abnormal teeth growth could have caused the jaw bones to break, the doctors were ready to perform a complete reconstruction surgery for his lower right jaw. “Fortunately, the teeth growth had not damaged the jaw bone,” said Palwankar.