Name: Guiding Implant Treatment with CAD/CAM

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Author: Dr Philip Tan, Australia

The goals of implant treatment are to create restorations that are indistinguishable from teeth, can be maintained by the patient, last as long as possible and are amenable to retreatment when necessary.

A foundational component to achieving those goals is proper planning. Without proper identification of the pertinent issues avoidable mistakes are made and treatment is compromised.

The advent of digital technologies has been able to improve the planning process and bring enhanced visualization to the planning process as well as improving preparation for the final restoration.

There are many implant planning software packages available, however they have issues with poor surgical guide fit, high cost centralized manufacturing, a lack of integration with CAD/CAM restoration manufacture, limited implant library selections and limited support or approval from implant companies.

One contemporary implant planning software that is proving to be successful is Implant Studio by 3Shape. Apart from the accuracy provided by the system, it offers a wide range of implant systems that have the approval from the implant manufacturers as a validated workflow.

The system also allows for local production of the guides and complete integration into a mature and well-established CAD/CAM restorative package. The latter appointment is particularly important as it allows the treating practitioner to move beyond just planning an implant location but also to the construction of custom implant components prior to surgery.

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