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A Miracle of Collaborative Giving | New York, NY

A smile makeover gives new hope to a cancer patient.

By David Ward, DMD

I’ve often had patients come and go with very little fanfare. It’s not that I don’t want to know more about my patients’ personal lives; it’s just that the day’s pace leaves me with precious little time to ask more than the typical superficial questions: How are the kids? How is your spouse? Congratulations on your new baby!

But on a rather ordinary day in March 2011, I met an extraordinary person. At the age of 55, Roger decided it was time to get the smile he always wanted. After cursory introductions and greetings, I sensed Roger’s uneasiness and asked about his health and medical information. He told me he’d recently seen a doctor for a medical problem and needed more tests. They suspected cancer.

But Roger quickly became more upbeat and began opening up about his desire for a better smile. It was immediately clear that we’d have a great relationship and I’d enjoy providing him with a new smile.

After discussing his goals and desires for his smile, we started discussing a budget. We obviously wouldn’t be able to complete the full plan of crowns and veneers he’d hoped for due to financial constraints, but we agreed on a staged treatment over a period of time. Roger left after chatting with just about everyone on my team, which became a common occurrence that we all came to enjoy during the course of his treatment.

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