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Why Put Up With Time-Consuming, Costly Impression Retakes?


Why Put Up With Time-Consuming, Costly Impression Retakes?

Who likes disruptions in their workflow? How about wasting time on repetitive tasks with a high rate of failure? Better yet, anyone want to make patients endure some additional discomfort? Of course, nobody actually wants any of that. Yet, such disruptions are part of dentists’ daily routine, because their work is often complex, unpredictable, and laden with potential pitfalls.

But there is one common hitch that, if avoided, can save a great amount of time and inconvenience for both the dentist and the patient. And that is taking an accurate impression—and not having to take it again ... and again. It’s a true challenge to capture such perfect detail in a less-than-optimal environment, especially when the patient is having difficulty of their own. In fact, a 2017 study of 1,157 crown-and-bridge impressions found at least one detectable error in 86% of the examined impressions.1

This used to be familiar ground for Louis F. DeSantis, DDS, FACP, who has been practicing dentistry and prosthodontics in Staten Island, NY, for over 30 years. Dr. DeSantis was never comfortable with polyvinylsiloxane materials in the past because he could never achieve the quality he sought in an impression. “There was always one spot somewhere, especially on multiple-unit cases. I’d have to go back and re-impression, and I don’t want to do that. It’s uncomfortable for the patient, it’s time-consuming, and it’s costly to keep laying out all this material,” he said.

One-and-Done Impressions

Kettenbach's Panasil Family of productsWhen Dr. DeSantis began using Panasil from Kettenbach, he no longer had such problems, and as a result, he found himself saving time—and lots of it. If he could take 1 impression instead of 3, he is saving 8 to 10 minutes of tray-loading per appointment, not to mention the time saved cleaning up the patient.

The Panasil family is a robust line of A-silicone-based impression materials with elastic and hydrophilic properties, high tear strength, dimensional accuracy, and a strong resistance to permanent deformation. They are designed to provide superior precision and performance in extreme situations. With a variety of viscosities and set times, Panasil can provide a custom combination to suit specific needs.

Dr. DeSantis uses Panasil tray Soft Heavy Fast in combination with Panasil initial contact Light secondary material, in a double-mix impression technique. “It’s unreal how accurate this material is,” he said. “It has a 4-minute working time, from turning the machine on to turning it off, which is nice and quick.”

Dr. DeSantis echoed the sentiments of a team of dentists who tested Panasil in their practices during the Dental Product Shopper evaluation and awarded it “Best Product” status. Many lauded the materials’ adequate working time and short intraoral setting times of 2 to 3 minutes as a key feature, and—like Dr. DeSantis—enjoyed clear, well-defined margins in their impressions, avoiding retakes. Evaluator Dr. Russell Duke found that the material was not deterred by moisture, and went as far as to say that Panasil made him more confident in his impression-taking technique. 

Working With—Not Against—the Dentist

“From my experience, Panasil is one of the best impression materials I’ve ever seen,” Dr. DeSantis said. “Although most companies will tell you that they make hydrophilic material, Kettenbach’s polyvinylsiloxane truly handles like a polyether, more so than other materials I’ve used. I don’t see the issues with folding and suck-back and other phenomena that occur in the presence of a little bit of moisture. That, to me, is the best thing a practicing dentist can ask for in an impression material, because we work in a very wet environment.”


1 The quality of fixed prosthodontic impressions: An assessment of crown and bridge impressions received at commercial laboratories.

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