Why CT Three Dimensional (3D) Imaging is Beneficial for Diagnosis and Dental Implant Planning
The increasing use of osseo-integrated dental implants has created a wider demand for advanced radiographic techniques to assess tooth and jaw condition during both pre-surgical and post-operative patient evaluation. Cone beam 3D CT image, while a relatively new dental technology, has radically transformed the way dentists can gather information.
The result of this change is the ability to diagnose problems and work out a viable, effective, individually tailored treatment plan in a manner that previously could not even be imagined. The shift from interpreting two-dimensional information (think “shadow”) to diagnosing from three-dimensional imaging is a quantum leap – one which has permanently altered the way dentistry is practiced.
Avoiding Dental Implant Complications using Cone Beam Technology
Some of the uses, benefits, and details of cone-beam imaging include:
1. Precise analysis (to within 100 microns!) of both the quantity and quality of bone needed for dental implant placement.
2. The ability to fabricate extremely precise surgical guides for implant placement, providing faster, more comfortable (less traumatic) implant placement.
3. Evaluation of the temporomandibular joints for bony degenerative changes.
4. Examination of teeth and facial structures for orthodontic treatment planning.
5. Evaluation of the proximity of wisdom teeth to the mandibular nerve.
6. Evaluation of teeth and bone for signs of infections, cysts, and tumors.
7. Conventional panoramic survey for general diagnostics relating to the tooth arch and the jaw.
8. The ability to precisely pinpoint infections around the root or internal structure of the teeth, making subsequent root canal therapy easier and less traumatic.
9. Diagnosis of bone loss extent from periodontal gum disease, and accurate choice of appropriate treatment.
The radiation used is a small fraction of that used in medical CT scanners, and even less than that of a full series of old film x-rays. The advances in this area of diagnosis and treatment are truly staggering!
Pathology and CT 3D Scans
A huge benefit of cone beam CT scan is the ability to “look inside” the bones and examine pathology in a way that previously has only been available in hospitals. We can precisely determine the location, size and relative positioning of the teeth, potential pathology, location of the nerve channels, sinuses, fluid in the sinuses, and even bony changes in the TMJ tempromandibular joint. Many of these changes can be found at a stage where treatment is easier and the diagnosis more accurate!