Grand Island, NE...June 1995
All good things must come to an end.
All our heros fade away sooner or later and one of mine bit the dust in June 1995.
Oh, no he didn't die, he's too ornery for that.
He didn't even completely retire.
For about 20 years now Dr. Kent Powers has been both endodontist and periodontist to the people of central Nebraska.
Last June 1 he just put away his endo files and endo syringe and quit doing endo.
I know at least one of his referring men who quit dentistry when he found out Kent wasn't going to do his endo any more.
But he made it stick.
Now he's only doing easy stuff...perio.
No more emergency cases.
Endo is like ER work.
Perio is more like dermatology.
Your patients never leave and they rarely are sick enough to need you NOW.
I first met Kent in 1978 in North Platte, NE.
Kent read one of my brochures that promised to rid dentistry of the 'Scourge of Digital Hyperkeratosis' and he thought he ought to meet a guy who could be this audacious.
He evidently didn't think I was too outrageous when we met, because he set aside his gutta percha and never looked back.
For the next 18 years all his endo cases were sealed and filled with PCA Root Canal Sealer.
You see, Kent did not have the problem that many endodontists have.
He didn't hang out with other endodontists and thus was not subject to their peer pressure.
He had mostly gp and periodontist friends.
He could make decisions on what was best for his patients and not worry about peer group approval.
And he decided that there was no good reason not to use syringable cement for his root canals.
And so he did.
Kent probably has better experience with cement fills than anyone in the nation.
Whenever I'd come to Nebraska, Kent would start the roundup.
Calling his referring men to take the course.
Was that dumb? Yes.
Dumb like a fox.
There are probably 75 dentists using cement fills who won't send cases to anyone but Kent.
He didn't need ALL the endo.
After all he was a periodontist too.
He realized even then that he couldn't do it all.
But it still needed to get done, so he enlisted 75 allies and they got the job done.
Kent is still councellor to many dentists in Nebraska, but they now have a real challenge.
They now have to increase their skills and tackle some tougher cases.
Now my next challenge is to get Kent to share his knowlege of endo, perio and of the endo-perio relationship on the internet.