Zimmer Biomet Products Meet Array of Needs for Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon
Chris Chafin, DMD, MD, is an up-and-coming oral and maxillofacial surgeon (OMFS) practicing in West Palm Beach, Florida, where he was born and raised. Within 2 short years of completing a 6-year OMFS residency at the University of Florida, he is already board-certified and a partner in a thriving private practice. Chafin has quickly obtained a solid reputation in the bustling South Florida dental community. He focuses on soft- and hard-tissue maxillofacial reconstructive surgery with a strong emphasis on implant therapy.
As a dentist, as well as a medical doctor, Chafin relies heavily on an array of Zimmer Biomet products in his practice, many of which he can use both independently and in conjunction with each other, depending on the procedure. The company's T3® Short Implant has been a "wonderful addition" to his armamentarium, he says, as it is designed as a treatment option for cases where the bone height is insufficient for standard implants. "The T3 allows me to provide implant therapy to patients who would otherwise not be able to undergo more invasive surgery due to medical complexities," Chafin explains.
For full-arch surgeries, Chafin's "go to" products, he says, are both the Navigator® System for Guided Surgery and the DIEM® System. "Navigator integrates well with stackable guided systems, which enables me to provide more precision and accuracy for the restorative clinician," he attests. "In addition, both systems allow for a completely digitally designed prosthesis, which decreases prosthetic loading time."
Recently, Chafin also started utilizing Zimmer Biomet's Trabecular Metal™ Implant in his practice. He states that this implant, made of a porous biomaterial of elemental tantalum, works particularly well for patients who are more high-risk or have poor bone quality, including those with diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, or prior oral infection. "I've found the Trabecular Metal Implant has had great success in revision cases and high-risk patients."
Regarding grafting, Chafin favors Puros® Cortico-Cancellous Particulate Allograft from Zimmer Biomet, using it for difficult vertical or horizontal alveolar reconstruction cases. Puros Allograft materials, he says, work well with tenting screws, sinus augmentation, platelet-rich plasma, and titanium-reinforced PTFE membranes. He adds that use of platelet-rich fibrin helps to ensure primary closure over his grafts, and maintaining graft integrity with primary closure is critical for a successful procedure.
To achieve consistency in implant placement, Chafin believes in maintaining parameters that make sense to the individual clinician. "We all attempt to minimize our failures and risk exposure. Therefore, strict parameters are needed for immediate loading, as well as choosing between single- versus two-stage implant surgery."
With the rising rate of student debt from undergraduate, dental, and residency programs, graduating dentists come to quickly understand the "sink or swim" reality of a saturated dental market. Chafin has found that procedural expertise, quality products, partnership, and education are crucial to success. As part of a burgeoning private practice, he sees the importance of developing a strong network of referral relationships for building a professional brand. "I've found that maintaining open lines of communication with the local dental community is paramount," he notes. "Additionally, a knowledgeable office coordinator and a great implant representative make for a smooth experience for restorative colleagues."
Participation in small-group educational events also helps in making connections with other practitioners, he suggests. "Zimmer Biomet's web-based continuing education courses are easy to use and fantastic for small-group webinars," he confirms.
With continued training and an armament of Zimmer Biomet dental implant products, Chafin is looking forward to a long, prosperous, and happy career as an oral and maxillofacial surgeon in his South Florida hometown.