Medical Tourism: Doug Undergos Major Dental Surgery In El Salvador

by Lori Lundin

The major portion of treatment will be done today with Doug under twilight anesthesia. He'll have seven titanium dental implants, three extractions and two bone grafts. This much work in one day is quite invasive, which is why he will need to be sedated.

It is sunny and 85 degrees, the birds are chirping outside our hotel window and Doug says he is ready. Our host, Ricky, picks us up and drives us to the dental office nearby. Another day of big welcomes from the staff.

The dentist has two assistants, both Salvadorian female dentists and an anesthesiologist. They all look like they are ready for a major surgery, dressed in sterile clothing.

Doug sits down in the chair and the anesthesiologist begins the intravenous sedation process. He explains every step to Doug: that he will sedate him and inject antibiotics through the IV. Doug quickly goes under and I'm asked to leave the room.


I go back at the Sheraton, sit by the pool and read a book while I wait for the surgery to finish.

About three hours later, Ricky calls to say Doug's surgery is finished.

We arrive back at the dentist where they are slowly bringing Doug out of anesthesia. Every 10 minutes a nurse comes in and raises his chair up a little more until he is ready to stand. When he does, he's groggy, but alert. They help Doug out to the car and Ricky takes us to the local pharmacy to pick up prescriptions the doctor has ordered. He will have to take an antibiotic and a painkiller.

Special Treatment

His first treat - ice cream.

This was a tough day, but Doug seems to be doing incredibly well. He says he feels no pain. Dr. Lorenzana says tomorrow will be a rest day, but if Doug is up for it; he would like to take us to spend the day at his beach house. That's certainly not the usual prescription we get from a dentist in the United States, but it is enticing nonetheless.

The doctor says he will call us in the morning to check in.

Doug spends the evening in our hotel room. For dinner, room service sends up a beautiful plate of mashed potatoes, refried beans and applesauce.

Lori Lundin is a News Anchor/Reporter with Fox News Radio