The first patient

Gosta Larsson was born in 1931 with severe chin and jaw deformities. At the time, there was no treatment available. He grew up without being able to chew properly, his speech was severely affected and his teeth were, as he expressed it, “not in the place they were supposed to be”.

It was Larsson’s doctor who suggested a closer look at the new method he had heard of – titanium implants. Gosta larsson met with professor Branemark and it was then decided that the first titanium implant surgery should take place in Gothenburg.

“During my childhood and youth I learned to accept the fact that very little could be done to reduce the effects of my handicap. My life was far from normal, I was unable to eat or talk properly, I couldn’t even chew a slice of white bread.

When Professor Branemark told me he could help me, I’m not sure I knew what to expect. Knew nothing but the current state, and I was to be the first person ever to try this new, very advanced treatment. I was hardly the ideal patient as my jawbone was not the strongest.

But as we talked and it was all explained to me, I felt that mutual trust and respect was building up. To cut a long story short, the surgery gave me a fixed set of new teeth, anchored by a bridge held by four titanium implants, and on the day of the surgery I realized my life would change for the better.

I need only close my eyes to recall that incredible feeling of being able to eat just like everybody else. And when I talked I could articulate and make myself understood so much better. For a long time afterwards I constantly had to look twice in the mirror to remind myself that this really was the way I now looked.

After forty years I still have my original implants. It’s more than true to say my life has changed – and it has changed in so many ways. The physical and functional benefits alone are more than anyone can imagine, at least with regard to the situation I was in at the time. The greatest change, however,came in my everyday life, as I noticed how my personality and self-confidence developed, all thanks to professor Branemark and his method. My gratitude and my respect for him is limitless.