The correct use of digital technology available can allow for treatment plans that are ideally documented and presented, ideally analyzed with imaging techniques, and ideally treated with such technologies as the implant stability quota meter.
Treatment planning for implant dental treatment is comprehensive, and often involves almost every discipline of dentistry. This is especially true when full-arch tooth replacement with implants is the plan. Considerations for a patient’s orthodontic, periodontal, endodontic, and cosmetic dental options must be looked at for larger implant treatment plans.
Digital technology has a large role in ideal treatment planning for implant dentistry. The correct use of digital technology available can allow for treatment plans that are ideally documented and presented, ideally analyzed with imaging techniques, and ideally treated with such technologies as the implant stability quota (ISQ) meter.
Documentation of a patient’s condition is a big part of the clinician’s responsibility in creating a treatment plan. Digitally based practice management systems allow for an ideal platform to organize and report on a patient’s condition. Digital photographs and digital radiographs can be rapidly and easily organized for diagnosis and presentation to a patient using digitally based charting systems. The diagnostic value achieved from digital image gathering is superior to analog based alternatives (ie, film). With digital images, enhancements that can help make better decisions for treatment plan options can be made immediately. The ultimate digital imaging for dental implant treatment is a cone beam CT (CBCT) scan. A CBCT scan gives the clinician detailed digital information on anatomy and pathology, and it is utilized to help create a final prosthetic plan. Information from a CBCT scan can also indicate the density of bone, which can help predict whether a patient can have immediately loaded implants or not.
Once a treatment plan is created and presented with the help of digital imaging technology, other technologies also come into play to achieve optimal treatment for the patient. Technologies such as the ISQ meter’s magnetic resonance frequency to measure implant stability at placement and centrifuges, which are used to create growth factors with platelet-rich fibrin and platelet-rich plasma, are a couple of examples. When the available digital technologies are combined for treatment planning, diagnosis, presentation, and treatment, our patients will always benefit.
In this issue, we have an outstanding article by Implants Today advisory board member Dr. Scott Ganz, who explains and demonstrates how technology can be used to optimize the final outcomes when placing dental implants. Additionally, Dr. Anthony Ramirez presents an excellent article outlining the digital pathway used to create guides for implant treatment in a safe and predictable manner. Every clinician should keep in mind that while technology can greatly assist in the treatment planning process, as Dr. Ganz says, “It’s not the scan, it’s the plan.”
If you have any questions or comments about this topic, or any other subject presented in Implants Today, feel free to contact Dr. Tischler at email@example.com.