New lease on life for 75 year old who refused food as doctors suspect cancer.
After years of teaching English in China, it wasn’t hard for Yi Yu to acclimate to her new home when she relocated close to her family in Australia in 1995. Life was pleasant until five years ago when Yi Yu’s speech began to progressively slow down. Her daughter, Min, was alarmed and took her mother for medical testing. The doctors diagnosed that she had suffered a mini-stroke, which negatively impacted her speech. She lost her ability to communicate clearly, which became even more problematic when she couldn’t explain to her family why she was regularly refusing food.
Without adequate nourishment, Yi Yu began to lose weight rapidly and became very weak. Based on their suspicion of cancer, her doctors ran a series of tests, yet all of the results came back negative.
After spending more time with her mother, Min realized that Yi Yu had ceased to eat due to acute mouth pain from tender, painful gums and unstable teeth. In response, some healthcare practitioners recommended dentures, but Min was not confident about her mother’s tolerance level for this type of treatment because of the loosely fitting nature of dentures.
Min herself also suffered numerous dental problems some years ago and was also looking at the prospect of dentures, which she refused to accept for herself, and she wasn’t going to accept this for her mother. She received “All-On-4 Plus” dental implants in 2012, performed by Dr Alex Fibishenko, a noted pioneer of dental implants in Australia, and decided to bring her mother to the same clinic that had helped her, the All-On-4 Clinic, run by Dr Fibishenko. Min had a very positive experience with dental implants and she desired to grant her mother the same opportunity. Her recollection of the All-On-4 procedure consisted of being put to sleep and then waking up with no pain and great teeth, able to chew and bite immediately!
Initially, Dr Fibishenko was skeptical about Yi Yu’s suitability for dental implants, due to her weak, infirm condition. Yet Min advocated on behalf of her mother and pleaded for this chance to improve her quality of life.
After medical discussions with other All-On-4 team professionals, Dr Fibishenko agreed that Yi Yu could benefit from the procedure. Her damaged and diseased teeth were removed, and implants were affixed in the both her upper and lower jaws. Min stayed by her mother’s side throughout the fitting, eager to participate in this life improvement.
Yi Yu shared the same positive experience as her daughter, with minimal pain and swelling. After her whole treatment, she enjoyed an emotional round of applause from a group of dentists from her homeland that had travelled to All-On-4 Clinic for professional training. Even more momentous was when a plate of food was handed to Yi Yu, and she relished each and every bite!
Working with practitioners around Australia, Dr Fibishenko expresses how tales like Yi Yu’s are a strong driving force behind his team’s work. While there are always risks, they must be considered against the benefits for each individual – and one look at a smiling Yi Yu truly says it all!