History of the speciality

The history of the Stomatology, Oral and Maxillofacial surgery is specific in comparison with other medical specialities that are more classic.

Indeed all over the world, this specialty was set up in different manners depending of histories of dentistry and medicine of the country.

To describe with details the numerous situations of each country could be useful but long and it is not the aim of this web site. However we can summarize the situation :


Countries with  curriculums coming from anglo-saxon culture have initially a dental licence. We can put in this category UK, the American continent, Oceania, South Africa and Scandinavian countries. However within this group disparities exist and some of them require a double degree (dentistry and medicine) to be qualified in Oral and Maxillo-facial Surgery.   It is the situation in Canada, Australia and New Zealand, and UK.

Countries with a curriculum coming from Latin culture have initially a medical training. We can put in this category France, Spain, Italy, Portugal and Greece. But here differences exist too. In Greece for instance the double qualification is now mandatory. In Spain more and more maxillofacial surgeons get a double qualification.

In continental Europe, except for Scandinavian countries, double degree is mandatory for a long time. Germany, Austria, Belgium and the Netherlands are in this category.

The other part of the world have built their system following one of the 3 ways of qualification described above. However in many countries dentistry is a specialty of medicine as it is for any other medical specialty even when it is a very specific one such as Ophthalmology or Psychiatry.  

Coming back to France it is important to remind important dates :

History of Stomatology and maxillo-facial surgery :

1868 : Year of issue of the 1st book " Traité de stomatologie"  by Andrieu

1887 : Date of the setup of the 1st “Société de Stomatologie”

1895 : Date of the setup of the 1st chair of “Stomatologie“  at the “Faculté libre de médecine de Lille”

1907 : Date of the setup of the 1st international association of Stomatologie.

1915 : Creation of maxillo-facial centers to treat war injuries

1920-1939 : Creation of university positions in Stomatology in the main medical schools of France.

1943 : The “Société de Stomatologie de Paris“ becomes the “Société Française de Stomatologie“

1944 : The “Ecole française de Stomatologe“ is included in the  “faculté de médecine“

1949 : Setting up of the CES (“Certificat d'Etudes Spécialisés“) of Stomatology

1953 : the  “Société Française de Stomatologie“ becomes   the “Société Française de Stomatologie et Chirurgie Maxillo-Faciale“

1973 : 1er Congress of  “Stomatologie et Chirurgie Maxillo-faciale“

1984 : the CES of Stomatology is replaced by the DES (“Diplôme d'Etude Spécialisées) de Stomatologie“

1988 : Creation of the DESC (“Diplôme d’Etudes Spécialisées Complémentaires“) de “Chirurgie maxillo-faciale et Stomatologie“

2012 : Setup of the DESCO (“Diplôme d’Etude Spécialisées en Chirurgie Orale“) New diploma of Oral Surgery in common with dentistry with the same field of practice. This new specialty treats the pathologies of the mouth (exception : cancer and malformations). Maxillo-facial surgery (Traumatology, malformation, cancers, aesthetic, plastic and reconstructive surgery orthognathic surgery) is not open for dentistry a medical degree is mandatory to go in this specialty.  

History of dentistry :

1711 :  Year of issue of the 1st book from a medical practionor (Pierre Fauchard)  " le chirurgien dentiste ou traité des dents"

1731 : Dentistry is taught in the "Collège des chirurgiens de Paris"

1880 : Setup of the 1st  private dental school in Paris.

1892 : Setup of the dentistry diploma  

1909 : Dentistry training moves from 3 to 5 years : 2 for prosthetic rehabiltation ,3 for scientific and medical learnings

1935 : “Baccalauréat” is mandatory to begin dental studies

1955 : Dental teaching is control by the state

1965 : Creation the dental schools within the medical faculties

1968 : Separation of the dental schools  from the medical schools

1971 : Setup of the « doctorat de chirurgie dentaire », dentists become « docteurs en chirurgie dentaire ».

1975 : According to the European regulations  dentistry is extent to:  prevention, diagnosis and treatments of congenital or acquired pathologies of the mouth, the teeth, the maxilla and the adjacent tissues

2012 : Creation of the “internat qualifiant” that has opened 3 different specialties in dentistry  orthodontia, medical dentistry oral surgery that is common with medicine.   


This world situation should  induce an evolution of the training systems in the following years with the goal to provide an European harmony.