Faced with the prospect of dentures several years ago, Rebecca Barlow’s dentist suggested implants to replace her upper teeth. After a horrible bicycle accident in 2007, Sheryl Repasky needed numerous oral surgeries. Both women sought treatment from the doctors at Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Associates, PC, or OMSA.
“I couldn’t even eat an apple. I couldn’t eat anything hard like that,” says Barlow. “Now I can eat whatever I want. It was quite involved; they had to go up in my gums and put in the base so that it had something to attach to. It was kind of a drawn-out procedure, but I would go through it again in a heartbeat.”
“You don’t understand that in situations like my accident, when you have removable teeth and they’re not permanent, how much it affects you emotionally,” Repasky recalls. “I feel like I got my life back.”
Founded in 1971, OMSA offers a variety of services, including dental implants, wisdom tooth extractions, orthognathic surgery, oral cancer treatment and facial cosmetic surgery. Because of its rich history, decades of experience and wide-ranging areas of expertise, the surgeons have become nationally recognized. For patients like Repasky, who needed extensive dental work as well as cosmetic surgery, the comprehensive treatment is a blessing.
“All of these doctors are the best in the country and are right here, together, in Fort Wayne,” she emphasizes. “They’re not only the cream of the crop with their skill level, knowledge and passion, but they’re very relatable. They are very down to earth and they have integrity.”
“It’s kind of like a law firm where you have somebody who does estate law, somebody who does business law, somebody that’s in malpractice. They’re all lawyers but they have subspecialties,” explains Dr. Steven Butler, who is in his 33rd year with OMSA. “Most oral and maxillofacial surgery practices don’t do that. Most oral surgery practices are taking out teeth and the occasional jaw fracture and maybe putting in some implants. What we feel is unique about our practice is that we have quite a variety of training. We bring a broad variety of flavors of training from across the country.”
For instance, Dr. Ryan Diepenbrock is a facial cosmetic surgeon but also an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. He’s the immediate past president of the American Board of Facial Cosmetic Surgery. Dr. Steven Schimmele lectures all over the country on the treatment of oral cancers. Dr. Michael Stronczek is on the board of a malpractice company that reviews malpractice cases all over the country. Dr. Terrence O’Neill has received specialized training in dental anesthesia.
What makes the practice especially unique is the fact that all six surgeons are board certified. They say OMSA’s success can be attributed to its founders, who established high standards, exceptional quality care and a desire to help patients. Those attributes have been in place since the beginning – and they continue 50 years later.
“For the next 50 years, we hope it’s the same as far as office principles go and the way we treat patients. We’ll remain old-fashioned in that capacity but very progressive in terms of our ability to maintain state-of-the-art treatments and technology and patient care delivery,” says Dr. Lucas Reed, whose passion is implant rehabilitation and bone grafting.
“Our mantra has always been TEAM: Together Everyone Achieves More. I think our group has always done well with that, having great employees, and I think that sets us apart a little bit,” says Dr. Tim Shambaugh, who was an early partner in the practice and spent 34 years at OMSA before retiring in 2013.
The doctors estimate they perform more than 20,000 procedures a year and have treated about 1.4 million patients. While that is impressive, statistics aren’t the driving force in the practice. Patients Repasky and Barlow say they’ve never felt like just another number.
“They treat you like family. They are premier, really. They’re kind and compassionate and they’re passionate. They haven’t lost their fire. They’re excited about these things. They take the time to do it right. They don’t cut any corners,” Repasky says.
“I would recommend them without hesitation,” adds Barlow. “I actually look forward to going to a dental office because I had such a good experience. They really made me feel comfortable.”
Address: 7845 Carnegie Blvd. Fort Wayne, Indiana 46804
Phone: (260) 297-3513