Oral and maxillofacial surgery is the branch and specialty of dentistry which is concerned with and includes the diagnosis, surgical and adjunctive treatment of disorders, diseases, injuries, and defects involving the functional and aesthetic aspects of the hard and soft tissues of the oral and maxillofacial regions and related structures.


The NDSE in oral and maxillofacial surgery evaluates your knowledge and clinical competence in oral and maxillofacial surgery at the specialty level.


Canadian oral maxillofacial surgical specialists are required to have broad knowledge and skills in ten domains. The blueprint below indicates the domains and approximate percentage of questions in each domain.

Oral Maxillofacial Surgery Blueprint 


of questions

Temporomandibular disorders 5
Implants 10
Cleft lip and palate/craniofacial syndromes 5
Dentoalveolar/preprosthetic surgery 10
Medicine 10
Pathology 10
Orthognathic surgery 10
Reconstructive surgery 10
Trauma 15
Anesthesia and sedation 15
Total 100%


The examination will consist of two three-hour parts. The examination format consists of a mix of stand-alone short- and long-answer questions that assess general knowledge and application, and case-based questions that assess diagnostic and clinical decision-making ability.

References and Resources

Reference Texts

Abubaker, D., Lam, D., Benson, K. J., A. Omar Abubaker, D., & Din Lam, D. (2015). Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Secrets. Maarssen, Netherlands: Elsevier Gezondheidszorg.

Adams, G. A., & Bresnick, S. D. (2006). On Call Surgery. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Saunders.

Bagheri, S. C., Bell, R. B., & Khan, H. A. (2011). Current Therapy in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. Maarssen, Netherlands: Elsevier Gezondheidszorg.

Carlson, E. R. (2015). Diagnosis and Management of Salivary Lesions of the Neck. Atlas of the Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Clinics, 23(1), 49–61. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cxom.2014.10.005

DeLuke, D. M. (2014). Syndromes of the Head and Neck. Atlas of the Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Clinics, 22(2), xi. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cxom.2014.07.002

Ellis III, E., & Zide, M. F. (2018). Surgical Approaches to the Facial Skeleton. Alphen aan de Rijn, Netherlands: Wolters Kluwer.

Fernandes, R. (2014). Local and Regional Flaps in Head & Neck Reconstruction: A Practical Approach. Hoboken, NJ, United States: Wiley.

Fonseca, R. J. (2017). ORAL AND MAXILLOFACIAL SURGERY. Maarssen, Netherlands: Elsevier Gezondheidszorg.

Graber, L. W., Vanarsdall, R. L., Jr, Huang, G. J., & Vig, K. W. L. (2016). Orthodontics: Current Principles and Techniques (6th Edition). Maarssen, Netherlands: Elsevier Gezondheidszorg.

Granquist, E. J., & Quinn, P. D. (2015). Atlas of Temporomandibular Joint Surgery. Hoboken, NJ, United States: Wiley.

Likhterov, I., Roche, A. M., & Urken, M. L. (2019). Contemporary Osseous Reconstruction of the Mandible and the Maxilla. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Clinics of North America, 31(1), 101–116. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.coms.2018.08.005

Marciani, R. D. (2012). Complications of Third Molar Surgery and Their Management. Atlas of the Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Clinics, 20(2), 233–251. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cxom.2012.06.003

Marx, R. E., & Stern, D. (2012). Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology. Zaltbommel, Netherlands: Van Haren Publishing.

Miller’s Anesthesia. (2014) (8th edition). Toronto, Canada: Elsevier Canada.

Misch, C. E. (2008). Contemporary Implant Dentistry (3Nd Edition). Amsterdam, Netherlands: Reed Business Education.

Neville, B., Damm, D., Allen, C., & Chi, A. (2015). Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology. Maarssen, Netherlands: Elsevier Gezondheidszorg.

Peterson, L. J., & Miloro, M. (2012). Peterson’s Principles of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. New York, United States: Penguin Random House.

Pisano, J., & Tiwana, P. S. (2019). Management of Panfacial, Naso-Orbital-Ethmoid and Frontal Sinus Fractures. Atlas of the Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Clinics, 27(2), 83–92. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cxom.2019.04.001

Proffit, W. R., & White, R. P. (1991). Surgical-orthodontic treatment. St. Louis,  Missouri: Mosby-Year Book.

Reyneke, J. P. (2003). Essentials of Orthognathic Surgery. Zaltbommel, Netherlands: Van Haren Publishing.


Anandh, B., Lokesh, B., Ebenezer, V., Jimson, S., & Parthiban, J. (2015). All on four - the basics. Biomedical and Pharmacology Journal, 8(october Spl Edition), 609–612. https://doi.org/10.13005/bpj/756

Furlow, L. T., Jr. (1986). Cleft Palate Repair by Double Opposing Z-Plasty. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, 78(6), 724–736. https://doi.org/10.1097/00006534-198678060-00002

Mercuri, L. G. (2012). Avoiding and Managing Temporomandibular Joint Total Joint Replacement Surgical Site Infections. Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, 70(10), 2280–2289. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.joms.2012.06.174

Misch, C. E., Perel, M. L., Wang, H.-L., Sammartino, G., Galindo-Moreno, P., Trisi, P., … Valavanis, D. K. (2008). Implant Success, Survival, and Failure: The International Congress of Oral Implantologists (ICOI) Pisa Consensus Conference. Implant Dentistry, 17(1), 5–15. https://doi.org/10.1097/id.0b013e3181676059

Ruggiero, S. L., Dodson, T. B., Fantasia, J., Goodday, R., Aghaloo, T., Mehrotra, B., & O’Ryan, F. (2014). American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons Position Paper on Medication-Related Osteonecrosis of the Jaw—2014 Update. Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, 72(10), 1938–1956. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.joms.2014.04.031

Tarnow, D. P., Magner, A. W., & Fletcher, P. (1992). The Effect of the Distance From the Contact Point to the Crest of Bone on the Presence or Absence of the Interproximal Dental Papilla. Journal of Periodontology, 63(12), 995–996. https://doi.org/10.1902/jop.1992.63.12.995

Tollefson, T. (2016). Cleft Lip Repair: The Hybrid Subunit Method. Facial Plastic Surgery, 32(02), 150–155. https://doi.org/10.1055/s-0036-1582227

Wilson, W., Taubert, K. A., Gewitz, M., Lockhart, P. B., Baddour, L. M., Levison, M., … Durack, D. T. (2008). Prevention of infective endocarditis: Guidelines from the American Heart Association. The Journal of the American Dental Association, 139, S3–S24. https://doi.org/10.14219/jada.archive.2008.0346

Practice Guidelines

American Dental Association. Guidelines for use of sedation and general anesthesia by dentists. 2016

Practice Guidelines for Preoperative Fasting and the Use of Pharmacologic Agents to Reduce the Risk of Pulmonary Aspiration. (2017). Anesthesiology, 126(3), 376–393. https://doi.org/10.1097/aln.0000000000001452

Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario. Standard of Practice: Use of Sedation and General Anesthesia in Dental Practice. Toronto: The College; 2018 November.