Dr. Mulokozi Lugakingira, a.k.a. “The Implant Doctor,” a.k.a. “Dr. Luga,” originally from Tanzania, is set to open a third office for exceptional oral surgery care in Columbia City, Indiana. The Fort Wayne Oral Maxillofacial Surgery & Implant Center’s new office will open November 12, 2018. With his associate (and soon-to-be partner) Dr. Franklin Awah, Dr. Luga will cover all three locations, including his Dupont Road and Jefferson Blvd. offices, splitting time over a five-day work week.
He’s also an on-call, including for weekend oral surgery for all five area hospitals: Parkview Regional and Randallia, Lutheran, Dupont, and St. Joe, for any motor vehicle crash victims or infections in the mouths or neck. (Mulokozi and his wife, Kos, also have three young children.)
Dr. Luga wanted a practice that could offer both a private-practice setting and opportunities to perform hospital oral surgeries; that’s why he moved to Fort Wayne and bought a practice here, turning down offers in cities such as Philadelphia, Nashville and the Washington D.C. area. Fort Wayne seemed like a nice place to raise a family, and Dr. Luga was additionally attracted to the five hospitals.
And he’s not complaining about the busy. “I’m blessed to see patients from little kids to my oldest who was 104 years old,” Lugakingira said. “I do everything that I’ve dreamed to do.”
When ambition, talent, and passion combine to join forces, the mixture is an open door of opportunities that can only be stopped by how much sleep the bearer needs. And all of the fire has to come from somewhere.
In Tanzania, Lugakingira’s father was a judge who became a supreme court justice, one of seven and the equivalent of our country’s Supreme Court. Lugakingira was the first born out of four boys and one girl and his father just assumed his oldest would go his law; only the youngest did out of the group. It was either going to be law or the medical field or engineering because in third-world Tanzania the options for a guaranteed, stable profession were limited to those three.
Acceptance into that rarified academic world of limited acceptance meant Lugakingira made school his life, at the behest of his parents; hard work yielded the top academic place at his high school. It was his uncle, however, who suggested a career in oral maxillofacial surgery, which is essentially a medical doctor (surgeon) and a dentist.
In Tanzania, out of a population of 30 million in 1993, there were only two oral maxillofacial surgeons; if Lugakingira wanted to specialize in that field, he would have to leave the country. His father wanted his oldest to remain, if not in Tanzania, closer to home because there were offers in South Africa and India. Dad did not want this boy to go to America, resulting in a rift between the two.
After finishing dental school in five years while in Tanzania, he had to re-enroll into a U.S. dental school because he couldn’t practice in this country without graduating from an accredited American school. So that was another five years. After more schooling, internships, and residency opportunities in stops such as Philly, Nashville and Chicago, including time spent to complete a master’s program, Dr. Luga made the Fort Wayne move in 2011.
His rift with his father remained until his father visited New York in Spring 2003. The judge was nominated to sit on the newly developed International Court of Justice, which is now the United Nations Court of Law. He was not picked, but father and son made most of the opportunity and repaired their relationship and made peace. Lugakingira’s father passed three months later.
“A lot of people are aging better,” Dr. Lugakingira said. “We live longer, but just like everything else, you maintain your teeth as much as you can, and things happen along the way in your life.”
Dr. Luga has a busy and voluptuous life. The oral surgeon will do anything from pulling teeth to dental implants to facial reconstruction. Dr. Lugakingira is also part of the "Children's Craniofacial Center" Team at Dupont Hospital in Fort Wayne, taking care of cleft lip and palate patients. The new big thing are dental implants; it’s a procedure where titanium fixtures are placed to replace the roots of missing teeth. He sees a lot of wisdom teeth extractions and dental implants. That’s why he’s also called “The Implant Doctor.”
Fort Wayne Oral Maxillofacial Surgery & Implant Center
Location addresses and phone numbers
can be found at FortWayneOralSurgery.com