BETHESDA, Md., Feb. 26, 2015 – Louis Gilbert creates handmade, lifelike prosthetic eyes in the dental laboratory at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center here.
Gilbert, a retired Navy dental technician, received training in maxillofacial prosthetics at the Naval Postgraduate Dental School. The craft involves creating replacements for missing ears, noses and other facial parts missing due to birth defects, cancer, combat or trauma, he explained.
He completed the NPDS maxillofacial laboratory prosthodontics course in 2000. The six-month course allowed him to expand his dental technician skills while learning the ins and outs of painting and creating facial prosthetics, which involves using the same materials as those used to make dentures.
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