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Update (12/2007): As suggested below, I did continue my research into the phenomenon of people traveling abroad for dentistry, cosmetic surgery and medical care generally; and the result has been my first book, Beauty from Afar (the link is to the Amazon.com page for the title, where you will also find my author blog .) My main blogging efforts in 2008 will be concentrated at: www.jeffschult.com.


This is a web version of what was originally the cover story of Northeast, the Sunday magazine of the Hartford Courant, on May 23, 2004.

I went to Costa Rica for reconstructive dental work that I could not afford to have done in the United States.. I had a wonderful time, made some great friends and, most importantly, was able to get expert dental work done at a relatively low cost.

I've gotten quite a bit of email since the article was published, mostly from people who enjoyed reading it and, gratifyingly, from people who said it helped them and gave them hope that they, too, might obtain affordable dental care by following in my footsteps.

Traveling abroad to find quality healthcare and for elective surgery is a growing trend in the United States, and it can be difficult to find reliable information about it. I expect to do more research and writing on the subject.

In the meantime, here is my story.

-- Jeff Schult