September 2011, Volume 32, Issue 7
Published by AEGIS Communications
HIOSSEN: Innovation, Education Keys to Implant Success
Bob Lee, Executive Director of HIOSSEN Inc., believes the "expansion, if not explosion" of the use of implants is due to growing acceptance by clinicians and patients and their inclusion among treatment options by an increasing number of insurance companies. "Urban myths that implants are risky or only for the rich are clearly over," he claims.
Lee credits a number of factors for an ever-increasing implant success rate, which he says now surpasses 95%. Not the least of these factors is such advanced technology as CAD/CAM and computed tomography (CT). "CT technology has enabled better treatment plans, more accurate surgeries, and higher implant success rates by helping practitioners precisely diagnose patients' oral health and bone quality," he says.
Lee notes, however, that while these innovations have made the implant process simpler, faster, and safer, only about 20% of practitioners are placing implants in the United States, so there is plenty of room for industry growth. Conversely, he points out the penetration achieved in South Korea—home of HIOSSEN's parent company, Osstem Implant—is up to 85% of clinicians using implants. He attributes this to the dramatically higher adoption rate in Korea to an emphasis on professional education and customer service, two elements that he says are part of HIOSSEN's "complete package to the practitioners."
HIOSSEN features an education division known as Advanced Implant Courses (AIC), which Lee says "has established itself as among the finest surgical-based implant continuing education institutions to provide realistic and practical implant training to clinicians." Three courses are available—basic, advanced, and 1-day seminars—all with hands-on sessions and some with live surgeries. They are conducted worldwide, including at 10 US sites.
In addition to AIC, HIOSSEN sales representatives provide a range of personal services to clinicians. "We do our best to be a long-term partner for the clinicians' success and believe that we can grow and expand only if our customers grow and expand," he says. "From product assistance, practice management, surgery assistance, to staff and patient management, it is like adding an implant coordinator to your practice, free of charge. We will be at the clinician's office on every implant surgery until the clinician feels absolutely comfortable doing it all by himself or herself."
As for the company's products, practitioners have many surgical and restorative options to choose from. Implants range in size from from 2.5 mm to 7 mm. Lee adds, "The ability to provide integrated platform switching helps minimize bone loss to enhance the esthetics and stability of the soft tissue, not to mention improve surface treatment and fixture design."
Lee notes that newly launched products from HIOSSEN such as the Crestal Approach Sinus (CAS) Kit and ET III fixtures with SA (sandblasted and acid-etched) surface treatment have been well received. He adds that new technologies "to further our already enhanced biocompatible and user-friendly products" are currently in progress in the company's research and development department.
While Lee makes it clear that HIOSSEN is seeking to expand sales by breaking into new markets, he says it is committed to educating professionals and the public in hopes of bringing implant products to more people. In fact, the company has a lofty goal in mind: "HIOSSEN would like to see a minimum of 60% of practitioners place implants in the United States within the next 5 years."
As confidence in implants rises and pricing becomes more competitive, it just might happen.
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