The 36-year-old woman said that doctors removed all her teeth and her jaw had to be replaced 3 times after her dentist spotted they were infected during a routine appointment. The former certified nursing assistant was diagnosed with osteomyelitis in her lower jaw which is an inflammation caused by an infection somewhere else in the body. The mother of two believes she developed the inflammation due to an infection in her tooth, caused by the root canal treatment. Luckily, all her medical procedures were covered by insurance. Now, she wants to share her story to help others suffering as a result of medical complications to feel less alone.
The 36-year-old woman from New York, Meighan Maselli, told Daily Mail that she was diagnosed with osteomyelitis in her lower jaw which is an inflammation caused by an infection somewhere else in the body.
Unfortunately, the doctors told the former certified nursing assistant that her lower jaw became so infected, they had to remove it and replace it with a metal rod, taking out all the bottom and top teeth to prevent it spreading further.
The 36-year-old woman was forced to undergo the risky operation twice due to complications and infections.
Doctors reportedly rebuilt her mouth using her shin bone. The mother also said that she reportedly lost 170 pounds as she struggles to eat.
Meighan Maselli told Mirror: “I barely leave my home any more. I was a beautiful girl with a young son at the time and he is traumatized by this. I almost gave my daughter’s high school graduation ticket up last year, in fear of ruining her day. I’m 36 now and I’m disabled, I have no teeth, and I’m stuck at home not working.
We’re struggling, my kid can’t leave home to go to college as she is working full time to help me pay my bills. Half of my jaw had been eaten away before anyone took me seriously. If I can avoid looking in the mirror I do.”
The unfortunate mother said that in April 2017, she had a root canal and a molar from each side of her bottom teeth had to be removed by an oral surgeon, as they had become too infected to be saved by a filling.
The 36-year-old woman told Daily Mail: “I felt it, this hurt, he couldn’t get them out and I heard a crack. I didn’t know if it was jaw or tooth. They think when the dentist pulled my teeth, the crack might have been him fracturing bone because it had been weakened. The next day it was painful, I didn’t have anything, no antibiotics. The day after that it was really painful in my jaw and going down my face.”
Few days later, the woman reportedly had an X-ray that revealed she had osteomyelitis in her mandible.
According to the health officials, osteomyelitis is inflammation that occurs in the bone and is caused by an infection that had spread from elsewhere in the body or originated in the bone itself.
The woman thinks she developed the inflammation due to an infection in her tooth, caused by the root canal treatment.
The next day, the 36-year-old woman reportedly woke up with a huge abscess under her chin. She went to the hospital and doctors gave her a two-week course of antibiotics. But, the abscess was still there and it’s just getting worse. The unfortunate woman said that she was in pain almost every night. She also said that she didn’t sleep, couldn’t eat and couldn’t do anything.
In November 2017, the 36-year-old mother when to see another doctor.
Meighan Maselli told Daily Mail: “He came out and said ‘get her down to CAT scan now’. My jaw, from the back of my mouth to the middle of the chin where the abscess was, was gone. He said ‘your teeth are sitting in mush’ and there was nothing they could do for me.
They said they were going to take out the lower half of my infected jaw and were essentially going to clean it all out and put a rod in there. I was petrified, I was so scared. My biggest fear was my teeth, always has been; I didn’t have bad teeth I always went to the dentist.”
In Jan. 2018, Maselli underwent a six-hour surgery and went home a few days later. But, this was not the end of her problems.
Just 2 months later, doctors told the woman that the rod had made the infection worse and she must have another eight-hour surgery to rebuild her jaw using bone from her hip.
Meighan Maselli told Daily Mail: “I was so scared when they were talking about taking bones from another place in my body – I had never been through anything like this. I came out with a scar on my hip four inches long that goes right up to middle of my back. The lower part of my face is numb, from the middle of my lip to the corner of my mouth and my chin down I have no feeling, and this started after that surgery.”
In June 2018, CAT scan reportedly revealed the bone from her hip had completely died inside her face and was moving up through her lip. So, doctors had to removed it. They also removed all her teeth to prevent any further infection from spreading.
In Sept. 2019, the 36-year-old woman underwent an 18-hour surgery to rebuild her jaw. The mother also said that she also had three more surgical procedures to thin down the thick skin on her neck.
The hospitalizations and her disability has prevented the woman from working since her original root canal in 2017, she said.
Luckily, all her medical procedures were covered by insurance. The 36-year-old woman told Daily Mail that she wants to share her story to help others suffering as a result of medical complications to feel less alone.
Meighan Maselli told the Mirror: “People shouldn’t be treated this way, where do you go when it’s too hard medically to prove who is at fault? I’ve called so many doctors to see if they can help me and everybody tells me to go back where it started. I cry every day. It is the worst.
The first thought and last thought of my days are always regarding my face in some way. The amount of stress on my body, it’s like going to bed being 32 and waking up looking 70. I want other people like me know that they’re not alone.”