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Panoramic Based Screenings: The New Standard of Care?

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For years, many clinicians felt like panoramic films were only for oral surgeons and orthodontists. For the most part, they weren?t acceptable for diagnosing many of the conditions of concern to restorative dentists. Digital panoramic imaging, however, has changed all that with drastically improved image quality. You can now image all the areas you are responsible for, at the level of clarity you need, while lowering the radiation dosage to your patient.

The 1997 ADA House of Delegates defined ?Dentistry? as: ?The evaluation, diagnosis, prevention and treatment of diseases, disorders and conditions of the oral cavity, maxillofacial area and/or the adjacent and associated structures provided by a dentist??.?

An FMX doesn?t show the TMJ, the sinuses, or the submandibular areas, yet, YOU ARE CLEARLY RESPONSIBLE FOR THESE AREAS! In 2006, the ADA and FDA created joint guidelines for new patient radiological examination which stated the following:

Panoramic Exam with Posterior BWX recommended for: 

-Child with Mixed Dentition

-Adolescent with Permanent Dentition

-Adult, Dentate or Partially Edentulous

There are 4 graduate radiology programs in the US?the University of Connecticut, the University of Iowa, the University of North Carolina, and the University of Texas-San Antonio. All 4 programs have adopted these guidelines and use digital panoramic surveys as the main screening tool for new patients. The high quality of the digital panoramic images and the reduction in patient dosage has allowed this to happen.

J. Morita has been a leader in the field for both clarity of image and dose reduction. The Veraview IC5 HD can deliver a high resolution panoramic image with a dosage of only 5 µSv and the Veraviewepocs 2D offers an even higher resolution image with a dose of only 7 µSv. To compare these numbers, the average digital pan gives off 20 µSv, the average film-based pan dosage is 40 µSv and the average film based FMX runs between 170 µSv and 220 µSv.

It is clear that we, as clinicians, should be seeing more radiographically than we had in the past. The improved resolution of digital panoramics has made that a reality. The Morita machines, the Veraview IC5 HD and the Veraviewepocs 2D, have taken high resolution a step further by reducing the dosage to the patient creating a ?Win-Win? situation for the clinician and their patients.

Dr. Turchi began practicing general dentistry after graduating from the Arthur A. Dugoni University of the Pacific School of Dentistry in 1988. He is currently the Director of Educational and Clinical Affairs and Senior Product Manager for J. Morita USA in Irvine, California.

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