D4D Technologies: Forging Innovation and Providing State-of-the-Art Tools
“This company did not begin based on the premise that it would change thefundamentals of dentistry; rather, it was built to complement those foundations,” says Gary Severance, DDS, Vice President of Marketing and Clinical Affairs.
D4D Technologies, LLC thoroughly understands the intricate needs of both dentists and patients and forges cutting-edge technologies based on that knowledge.
Delivering on that promise, the company offers dentists the E4D Dentist system, which provides an intuitive chairside computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) system to help create restorations that surpass the dentist’s and patient’s expectations. Its state-of-the-art technology provides accurate 3-dimensional (3D) imaging of the oper-ating field.
Among its many advantages, E4D accommodates both conventional and modern techniques. “One of the unique aspects of this system is that it doesn’t mandate the dentist to change his or her technique,” says Severance. “It allows the dentist to gradually evolve into the new techniques.”
Three Source Scanning™ provides the dentist with several options. The dentist can choose to scan directly into the mouth or take an impression the conventional way and then scan it. With one click, the system inverts the image and provides a realistic stone model. The system’s DentaLogic™ Software has a user-friendly interface with icons, a wireless mouse, and easy navigation. The Autogenesis feature morphs the restoration to ideal proportions and contours.
Another advantage of E4D is that it does not require the use of powder. Instead, it employs a high-powered laser capture method to detect reflection from hard and soft tissue, impression materials, and all dental stones. The digital 3D impressions of teeth can be used to plan full-contour crowns, inlays, smile designs, and no-preparation veneers.
“A digital impression gives the patient a new and better experience,” Severance says.
Lee Culp, CDT, Vice President of Dental Technologies, says, “Same Day Dentistry™ allows the dentist to have that patient in the chair only once. The scan can take seconds, and the system allows instantaneous 3-D visual feedback to the dentist, for verification of preparation design and margin placement.
“If the data is sent to an E4D Laboratory, the technician can evaluate the scan immediately, make recommendations on the materials, and provide instant feedback. It is visual confirmation of communication and verification of quality that we have never seen before. You just can’t do that by looking at an impression.”
This real-time communication capability helps accelerate superior delivery of care, facilitate diagnosis and treatment planning, and provide the most optimal treatment outcomes. ED4 empowers the dentist with complete control over the final restoration.
“Our goal is to erase the lines between dentist, dental technician, and dental assistant and allow everyone to speak the same language,” Severance says. “We don’t look at it as a dentist-only system. It’s a circle of care.”
Another benefit is that a dentist can design as many as 16 restorations at once. The software and hardware equip the dentist with unmatched ease-of-editing quadrant dentistry and smile designs.
“Our system was not designed in a vacuum,” Severance says. “We asked users of other systems what they would want. By doing so, we learned they did not want to powder or use a contrast system and they preferred a more ergonomic system.”
The system also helps reduce costs, he says. “Each time the dentist has to redo an impression, it’s another $10 to $20. Our system saves money by not requiring the dentist to keep redoing the impression,” he says.
D4D has partnerships with Ivoclar Vivadent and 3M ESPE for E4D. Restorations are fabricated from cutting-edge materials supplied by these companies. Another partner is Henry Schein Dental, which is responsible for global sales and distribution.
As part of its customer service, the company offers a program called SOS, or Support on Site. This is live help from a team of technicians, who can access the dentist’s system online in real time and help the customer navigate the system.
Included in the cost of the system is a two-day direct training program from the company on their evolutionary digital impressioning system. “Mandatory education and training has reduced the learning curve substantially,” Severance says. “The dentist and D4D become acquainted with each other—it’s all about a relationship. This isn’t a blindfolded purchase.”
Culp notes digital impression and digital dentistry does not replace the foundation of knowledge that a dentist needs: experience in diagnosis and treatment planning, materials, and tissue management. “We can’t compensate for a bad preparation. What we can do is give the dentist better education about the use of impression technology before he begins using it in his practice,” Culp says.
In 2010, the company plans to introduce D4D Sky. “This will be the communication avenue for dentists and laboratories, allowing them to look at the same case online in real time,” Severance says.
D4D continues to have its eye on the future with optical coherence tomography (OCT), which is a technique used in cardiology and ophthalmology. This will enable dentists to better manage soft-tissue problems. “This technology allows the laser to see through hard and soft tissue without any negative effects. This truly marks a milestone in dentistry,” Severance says. “The direction for the future leads to innovation.”
D4D Technologies, LLC
630 International Pkwy, No. 150
Richardson, TX 75081