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The Science Of Dentistry And Patient Care

Blog post   •   Aug 17, 2017 18:07 EDT

Digital dentistry with technology like Planmeca Ultra-Low Dose™protocol is reshaping the industry

(In this week’s blog Dr. Alex Touchstone discusses Ultra Low Dose CBCT technology)

As healthcare professionals, we are bombarded by the challenges of juggling patients, running a practice, and our personal responsibilities. Many times we are loath to take on another product, machine, software package, or new training process requiring additional time and financial commitments.

The science of dentistry is one of the elements that make our profession uniquely challenging and rewarding. As oral health care providers, we employ judgment, skills, and technology to reverse disease processes and restore oral tissues to a state of health and functional aesthetics. This process is complex, to say the least.

When a game-changing technology such as CBCT is introduced to our profession, its potential to significantly improve outcomes requires us to take notice. We are obligated to take the time to research its capabilities and limitations. Based on our findings we should incorporate CBCT into our clinical workflow where appropriate. Until recently, a barrier to the adoption of CBCT has been the effective radiation dose to the patient.

Planmeca Ultra Low Dose™ makes the decision to capture a volume during clinical diagnosis and treatment planning one of clinical need only. Planmeca’s unique ULD technology was developed in the form of a proprietary algorithm that can separate the inherent noise in low energy scans and remove it without touching the original. The dosing is reduced by approximately 77% without a statistical reduction in image quality*. The win, win situation is that doctors receive excellent diagnostic clarity from imaging scans and patients receive drastically reduced amounts of radiation exposure.

In many practices, dentists now consider selecting CBCT volumes to focus on the specific areas of interest to be their first imaging tool when assessing a patient. Ultra Low Dose, by removing a barrier to the use of CBCT, results in more effective diagnosis and improved patient care.

Looking forward, CBCT and ULD are the future of dentistry regarding workflow, ROI and most importantly for patient safety and comfort.

Dr. Alex Touchstone is a Key Opinion Leader for Planmeca.

*According to “Dosimetry of Orthodontic Diagnostic FOVs Using Low Dose CBCT Protocol” by JB Ludlow and J Koivisto. For a copy of this study visit:

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