June 2010, Volume 31, Issue 5
Published by AEGIS Communications
NobelProcera Expands the Capabilities of Clinicians
One of the more significant advancements in CAD/CAM technology is its growing clinical versatility, according to Hans Geiselhöringer, Executive Vice President, Marketing and Products, Nobel Biocare. “Versatility not only in the clinical situation but also in the ways patients’ expectations and financial means can be met,” he explains.
Such flexibility allows clinicians to integrate CAD/CAM manufactured products into their daily routines. Geiselhöringer lists situations for which this technology is beneficial: a low-cost nonprecious alloy substructure veneered with resin or ceramic material; a high-end all ceramic solution; a conventional denture setup retained by an overdenture bar; and an implant-retained removable restoration finished with custom all-ceramic teeth and individualized gingiva-colored composites. For these cases, “the base components such as copings, frameworks, and bars can guarantee maximum precision, material homogeneity, and stability for all patients,” he says. “Because of the consistent quality of product fit, chairside time can be reduced significantly.”
With the NobelProcera™ system, customers have the advantages of a leading-edge CAD/CAM system supported by Nobel Biocare’s extensive R&D capabilities. Historically, the company’s strategy and aim has been “not only to provide a broad product portfolio, but to ensure maximum quality and scientific evidence,” Geiselhöringer explains. “And in recent months, we’ve directed considerable time and effort toward optimizing production and product quality.” While developing the new front-end software for the NobelProcera scanner, Nobel Biocare’s first priority was to offer a user-friendly, intuitive system. “This goal has certainly been reached,” says Geiselhöringer. “We like to say that our CAD/CAM system was made by technicians for technicians.”
The company is confident about the capabilities and quality of its systems, offering a 5-year unlimited warranty on all products. If complications occur during clinical function, a new product can be ordered free of charge. “Here again, the convenience of virtual planning comes into play,” says Geiselhöringer, explaining that all order data remain available, even after years, and only a click of a button is required to reorder.
Geiselhöringer is enthusiastic about the benefits of CAD/CAM technology—and the new NobelProcera system. “This technology has revolutionized dental laboratory techniques and protocols. Advantages related to material and manufacturing processes will promote the continual adoption of CAD/CAM systems over conventional casting techniques.
“This is a compelling development that provides true benefits for the dental laboratory, the practitioner, and above all, the patient,” says Geiselhöringer. “Work flow is more cost-efficient and time-saving with even one CAD/CAM system in the dental laboratory. Other benefits include high-quality products with unrivalled precision, free virtual design options, and centralized production.” Another aspect of cost effectiveness and product safety is the centralized manufacturing. “Centralized milling clearly outclasses in-house systems: all workflows are permanently monitored. Industrialized fabrication guarantees consistent quality, and materials can be ordered as needed, eliminating the need for stock components. Finally, time- and money-consuming adjustments, updates, or repairs don’t accumulate. From a cost-savings perspective, the delivery of all metal frameworks in a highly polished and ready-to-use state adds to the true benefits of centralized manufacturing.”
These technological advantages will advance the role of the dental technician. “We will see a change in job description for dental technicians in the future: the generalist will be replaced by a specialist. We will probably see a split into different groups: the dental designer, focusing on the CAD design of frameworks, and the dental technician, focusing on finishing CAD/CAM-manufactured components. Overall, the dental technician will become an important partner in the treatment team, supporting treatment planning and alternative treatment options with expert knowledge.”
One of the most critical challenges for the customer is choosing the most suitable CAD/CAM system. “There’s a vast variety of systems available on the market, with different advantages and drawbacks,” Geiselhöringer says. “In the competitive market of dentistry, cost effectiveness is a very important aspect. Also, versatility is key—as implant dentistry is currently offered in most dental practices, a CAD/CAM system must allow a broader application than simply the fabrication of conventional crowns and bridges.
“Nobel Biocare has always been a forerunner in digital dentistry, and we intend to expand that lead in the future. Technological advancements will offer new applications for both the dental technician and the dentist. For example, one of the most exciting topics is the combination of virtual treatment planning based on 3-dimensional radiographic methods and subsequent virtual prosthetic treatment planning and execution.”
Whenever and however these new technologies emerge, the successful application by the user depends on excellent system training. “The education curriculum offered by Nobel Biocare is already extensive. In the future, we will expand and adapt to evolving needs,” Geiselhöringer says. “We recognize how important it is to offer courses for customers with different levels of experience. We want to support everyone using our system to evolve and grow with our technology and fully utilize its capabilities.”
Nobel Biocare USA, LLC
22715 Savi Ranch Parkway, Yorba Linda, CA 92887