Personal responsibility and treatment planning

It’s not easy to be the opening act the morning after a raucous Chris Isaak performance, but the men and women of the Modern Multidisciplinary Treatment Planning panel were able to engage the crowd through interesting subject matter, vivid images, and challenges to think differently about the way we treatment plan.

Dr. Pamela McClain, under the topic “Preserving Periodontally Compromised Teeth,” asked that in light of all the recent developments in implant technology, are we, perhaps, placing too many implants? “Our goal,” she said, “should always be too keep natural dentition.” To that end, she made her case for increased consideration of regenerative therapy and for dental professionals to remember that it is not their standard of beauty that they should push, but rather, that beauty is in the eye of the beholder—in this case, the patient.

Her point was a perfect lead-in to Dr. Avishai Sadan who in addressing “Comprehensive Esthetic Dentistry,” stressed the need to make the patient’s needs and in particular, their future needs, the main consideration in treatment planning. “There’s more to success than marginal fit,” he said. “We have to consider their future needs and how the life expectancy of our work matches up with the life expectancy of the patient.”

Dr. David Felton, addressing how poor communication between dentists and specialists can lead to compromised patient care, offered a stirring example of the needless pain and countless hours of treatment we subject patients to when we don’t include specialists and lab techs in treatment planning from the get go.

Peter Pizzi, CDT, speaking from the dental technician’s point of view, underscored the need to use comprehensive diagnostic planning early on to ensure long-term success. “When building a house, the foundation is extremely important,” he said. “The same is true of the work we create.”

Echoing that point, Robert Kreyer, Jr., CDT’s presentation on “Technical Treatment Planning” emphasized the need to define realistic goals and expectations for treatment planning and determining limitations through model analysis.

~ by cwaring on May 17, 2008.

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