The reason is simple. Patients are 3D, a reality that is captured by cone beam imaging



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Why do Dentists need Cone Beam 3-D technology?

“The reason is simple. Patients are 3D, a reality that is captured by cone beam imaging.” (Joe Mayes, DDS, MSD; Orthodontic Products, July 2007). Cone Beam 3-D technology provides dentists with the most accurate, three-dimensional anatomical information on a patient’s mouth, face and jaw areas. It far surpasses the capabilities of two-dimensional radiographs and provides dentists with the necessary tool to deliver the highest possible level of patient diagnosis, treatment and care. The CBCT® provides more detail than two-dimensional radiographs and allows the doctor to view everything from detailed “slices” of the patient’s anatomy to the interrelationships of facial features, bone, teeth and soft-tissue. The CBCT® increases diagnostic accuracy and surgical predictability. In addition, with a CBCT® scan, the patient is exposed to significantly less radiation than traditional medical CT scans of the oral and maxillofacial region.



For Implants and Oral Surgery: 3-D imaging helps dentists assess the quality of the bone, amount of bone available, and the location of other anatomical structures relative to the implant site. Knowing this detailed information facilitates pre-treatment planning, and ensures a greater degree of safety with anatomical structures of concern. Cone Beam 3-D imaging gives dentists the opportunity to virtually plan the implant cases so that surgical guides and pre-prosthetic components can be fabricated in advance of the actual surgical treatment.

For Orthodontics: The CBCT® provides the necessary 3-D views to accurately assess tooth relationships and view impacted supernumerary or abnormal teeth in relationship to other anatomical structures, such as roots, nasal fossa and sinuses. Cone Beam imaging reveals the location of impacted teeth and allows an orthodontist to bring them into the mouth without disturbing adjacent teeth and roots. 3-D imaging shows the interrelationships of bone, teeth, and soft-tissue for more predictable treatment outcomes.

For TMJ: Dentists can use the 3-D images to identify any problems associated with the joint, including arthritic changes and bone changes within the joint. By adjusting the contrast, practitioners can visualize the soft tissue in and around the temporomandibular joint to evaluate joint space and position of the disc. It also helps identify any bone-to-bone contact, small inclusion cysts within the condylar head, and the overall anatomy of the TMJ complex.

Without this technology, how would they provide treatment to the patient?

Without Cone Beam 3-D imaging, doctors need to rely on traditional two-dimensional radiographs. Two-dimensional imaging provides limited information from which dentists need to guess and approximate what the patient’s full anatomy actually looks like. 2-D images are subject to distortion and magnification. This approach lacks accuracy, precision and efficiency. “We are forced to study multiple 2-D images and assemble in our minds an approximation of what the patients’ structures actually look like. This is very time-consuming, as well as inaccurate.” (Dr. David L. Way, DDS, MS; OrthoTribune, December 2006).



Why wouldn’t the doctor just use a Medical CT?

The CBCT® allows dentists to take 3-D scans in their offices, which is quicker and more convenient to the patient. Keeping the patient in the office for an immediate 3-D scan increases the likelihood that the patient will move forward with the recommended treatment plan. In addition, a CBCT® scan is less expensive for both the doctor and patient, and exposes the patient to significantly less radiation (10-15 times less radiation) than traditional medical CT scans. For dental professionals, it elevates the quality of care they are able to provide patients. “The preoperative scans help me perform safer, less invasive procedures by increasing precision and reducing risk for the practice and patients.” (Dr. Kim Gowey, DDS and past American Academy of Implant Dentistry president).



How is the CBCT similar and different than a Medical CT and a Digital Panoramic?

  1. Medical devises are defined in the FDA Regulations as Part 892. Dental devices are defined as Part 872. Panoramic devices not controlled or covered by CON are cleared under 872.1800. All Medical CT devices covered by CON to date are cleared under 892.1750. The CBCT is cleared under 872.1800 just like a Digital Panoramic. The predecessor to the CBCT, Panorex CMT manufactured by Imaging Sciences, was also cleared under 872.1800.

  2. The definition of a CT, or “Computed Tomography” is defined by the State of Connecticut Office of Health Care Access, as well as the Code of Federal Regulations, Title 21, Section 1020.30 (b) as “the production of a tomogram by the acquisition and computer processing of x-ray transmission data.” This definition applies to both Medical CT and Digital Panoramic.

  3. Globally, over 5000 CBCT’s units have been placed in the field. All of these units have been placed for dental use. The majority of these, or approximately 80% are in private practice as a replacement for panoramic devices. In the US alone approximately 800 CBCT’s are sold per year rising at a rate that is expected that within three years this technology will replace over 50% of Digital Panoramic devices. Only two states in the world control the placement of these devices: Connecticut and Michigan. Michigan has special rules for CBCT’s used in dental. Over 80% of Dental Schools have these devices in their Dental Radiology Clinics and teach on it as part of their Dental Radiology program. None have traditional medical CT as part of the Dental Radiology Clinics.

  4. The State of Connecticut Office of Health Care Access has demonstrated an inconsistent decision on what to cover. Therefore, since the State of Connecticut Office of Health Care Access and the Code of Federal Regulations are not controlling Digital Panoramic devices, we assume the application of the device takes precedence over the definition.






Medical CT

CBCT®

Digital Panoramic

Dose to the Patient for similar information*

* Dr. Sharon Brooks, Dept. of Radiology, University of Michigan



1200 – 2000 uSv

5-140 uSv

6-15 uSv

Investment

(approximately)



$1-2 million

$150,000

$75,000

Use

Multiple protocols

Whole body

Variable dose


Maxillofacial only

Only height area is variable



Maxillofacial only

No variability



x-Ray Power

25,000 watts

900 watts

900 watts

Conclusion:

  • In conclusion, the CBCT Cone Beam 3-D device is more accurately defined by its application and use in dental imaging, not by definition.

  • Cone Beam 3-D imaging far surpasses the capabilities of two-dimensional radiographs and provides dentists the necessary tool to deliver the highest possible level of patient diagnosis, treatment and care.

  • The CBCT® increases diagnostic accuracy and surgical predictability. Without Cone Beam 3-D imaging, dentistry would rely on an element of guesswork and approximations.

  • The global dental Industry is transitioning to Cone Beam 3-D imaging, as evidenced throughout industry reports and articles. Installation demographics of CBCT units also supports this trend.

  • With an CBCT® scan, the patient is exposed to significantly less radiation than traditional medical CT scans of the oral and maxillofacial region.

  • The CBCT® in-office Cone Beam 3-D imaging system is safer and more convenient to the patient, and more efficient for the doctor. This convenience allows the doctor to immediately diagnose the patient and helps increase the likelihood that the patient will complete necessary treatment.


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