It has been suggested that oral and maxillofacial surgery (OMFS) is better established in dental schools than in medical schools, and as a result, dental students have a greater insight into the scope of the specialty. We explore how much time is allocated to OMFS in the undergraduate curriculum in medical schools in the UK, and the students' perceptions of the specialty. A total of 186 final year students from 5 medical schools were recruited in a questionnaire-based survey. Of them, 141 (76%) reported no exposure to OMFS, and 37 of the 45 students (82%) who had had some exposure reported that it was not part of their timetabled curriculum. The 2 aspects considered most important by students were the long training pathway (n=38, 20%) and the requirement for dual qualification (n=33, 18%). Our results suggest that UK medical schools provide limited exposure to OMFS. We think it is important that the specialty is included in the compulsory undergraduate curriculum to ensure that medical students gain some awareness. This will not only allow junior doctors to make better informed decisions about their chosen careers, but may also help to reduce the number of inappropriate referrals from doctors in other specialties. 

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