What You Should Know About Virtual Implant Placement

virtual implant placement

If you haven’t read this article from 2010, you’re behind the curve. Dov Almog DMD and Michael Nawrocki DMD wrote extensively on the benefits of virtual dental implant planning.  We’ve included an excerpt below:

Already in 2005, a report from Kalorama Information estimated that the growth in implant-based dental reconstruction products would outstrip other areas of dental devices and products. According to that report, 40 percent of the western population is missing one tooth or more; in the United States alone, approximately 10 percent of the population is completely edentulous; and every year about 2 million Americans loose a tooth due to sporting accidents. As a result, there has been a rapid increase in the number of practitioners involved in implant placement, including specialists and generalists, with different levels of expertise. Unfortunately, there has been a simultaneous raise in claims and suits involving dental implants, mostly associated with damage to the mandibular nerve and maxillary sinus perforations. This is in addition to failure associated with poor alignment.2 Therefore, considering that dental implants are the fastest growing discipline in dentistry, there is little doubt that cone-beam computerized tomography (CBCT) is the pre-eminent method for viewing and understanding three-dimensional anatomy and the foundation for successful implementation of oral implantology, one of the most important branches of dentistry today. CBCT carries very important radiographic, restorative and surgical information for dental implant planning, taking the guesswork out of what we do, and it is rapidly emerging as the diagnostic imaging standard of care. This information includes implant trajectory, distribution, depth and proximity to critical anatomical landmarks such as the mandibular canal, maxillary sinus, adjacent roots and alveolar cortical plates and undercuts.

About a dozen of these virtual implant planning software solutions are used for general oral implantology treatment strategy, of which only eight are ultimately used to translate the treatment strategy into an actual physical surgical guidance drilling template, thus taking the guesswork out of oral implantology (Figs. 1, 2). Utilization of these adjunctive state-of-the-art technologies altered the manner in which we pull together diagnostic data, plan and execute both simple and complex implant cases. These surgical guidance systems offer safer and more predictable placement of dental implants, ensuring accurate transfer of critical restorative and anatomical information to the surgical site. Additionally, these surgical guidance systems offer an opportunity to maximize a team approach between surgeons, restorative dentists and the labs, creating greater understanding, appreciation and professional camaraderie. Of the eight 3-D derived virtual planning software solutions that are ultimately used to translate the treatment strategy into an actual physical surgical guidance drilling template, two systems differentiate themselves from all the other systems in that no physical shipment needs to be made to the guide manufacturer.

This report attempts to provide an argument in favor of the utility of CBCT-image-based 3-D-derived virtual implant planning software solutions in oral implantology that are ultimately used to translate the treatment strategy into an actual physical surgical guidance drilling template. Researchers studying these virtual surgical guidance technologies agree that the quantitative relationship between successful outcomes in oral implantology and CBCT-based dental imaging — coupled with virtual planning and, ultimately, implant placement guided by surgical guidance templates — awaits discovery through large prospective clinical trials.5 Based on a series of case reports, it has been demonstrated that using CBCT-based dental imaging along with surgical guidance templates is, without a doubt, a reliable procedure, optimizing our patients’ safety and well being.

What does this mean for your dental practice 7 years later?  Virtual implant placement has come a long way in a short time, and you have even more choices than ever before.  If you select CinZara, you have the added benefit of the years of expertise of Dr. Ghabi Kaspo, who will collaboratively plan the implant placement through the use of virtual imaging and review with the oral surgeon or dentist.  We pride ourselves on providing superior customer service and customization, something that can be sorely lacking at larger organizations.  If you’re ready to take your practice to new heights, we urge you to reach out today!

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