At a time when dental technology is the rage and phrases such as “intraoral camera,” “digital radiography” and “imaging software” are part of the common vernacular, Amsterdam Dental Group never loses sight of the patient. So while dental implants have existed in dentistry for quite some time, for those requiring them, fears and concerns are very personal.
Some patients are anxious about pain or long recovery. Others want to enjoy all their favorite foods or leave the office looking the same as when they arrived. No matter the concern, Amsterdam Dental Group and its four dual-trained specialists are leading the field with MIDI™—the revolutionary minimally invasive means of placing dental implants.
But how does MIDI™ create more beautiful smiles while achieving greater patient comfort, more precise implant placement and shortened healing time?
The Technique Put Simply
MIDI™ is a true blend of art and science. With the 3-D X-rays and scanners, a patient’s mouth and jaw are virtually recreated—illustrating the exact height, width and length of available bone and important surrounding gum tissue. Special software uses this data to allow the doctors to precisely plan the entire dental implant procedure and review all surgical decisions before it’s performed in the patient’s mouth.
The key to performing MIDI™ is the ability to 3-D print precise surgical guides. Whether replacing one tooth or a complete dentition, this guide is the basis for precision and comfort.
“By being able to plan the surgical procedure on the computer using a CAT scan, we can have a 3-D surgical guide created that will place the implant where it needs to go without us having to actually physically look at the bone,” explains Harold S. Baumgarten, D.M.D., of Amsterdam Dental, which has offices in Philadelphia and Paoli.
Once the computer planning is completed and the guide is fabricated, the MIDI™ technique is performed. While still a surgical procedure, less manipulation of gum tissue and bone exposure leads to reduced surgery time and often no sutures at all. “It’s a method of placing dental implants that minimizes patient discomfort and postoperative pain and swelling,” adds Dr. Baumgarten.
Amsterdam Dental Group’s Howard P. Fraiman, D.M.D., likens the procedure to having arthroscopic knee surgery versus the traditional method of “opening up a knee.” MIDI™ procedures feature much smaller surgical sites. “It’s the most precise, most comfortable implant procedure you can have,” he says.
A Patient’s Perspective
For patients, MIDI™ is the ideal scenario—less time, less discomfort, better results.
Dr. Baumgarten recounts Amy T.’s recent case in which MIDI™ was the perfect solution: “Amy had suffered trauma to an upper front tooth when she was very young. As a result, the tooth root had begun to resorb and if untreated, it would eventually weaken and be at risk of fracture.”
“I was extremely anxious,” Amy says. “It was a front tooth, and the idea of having it pulled was a bit overwhelming.” There were the immediate concerns. Would she leave the office without a tooth? Could she return to work as a teacher and smile normally? These were followed by long-term questions about what Amy would and wouldn’t be able to eat. “I love apples so it might sound silly, but I had to wonder: Would I be able to bite into one again?”
Fellow practice specialist Jeffrey S. Ingber, D.M.D., shares, “Amy’s fears are not unique. We hear them a lot. However, they are very personal to the patient who is putting his or her care in our hands.”
Amy’s case started with comprehensive computerized pre-planning. A CT scan was used, along with a replica of her teeth and jaw, to ultimately create a 3-D surgical guide. This tool in the hands of well-trained specialists provides for highly precise implant placement. Knowing the dentist is able to anticipate any possible issues and plot a meticulous course provides a great amount of patient peace of mind.
As Dr. Baumgarten goes on to explain, “Amy’s tooth was extracted and a dental implant placed using the minimally invasive technique with a temporary tooth affixed that same day. This allowed Amy to smile and function as before, while the implant healed. A final abutment and crown was made after the implant had become completely integrated.”
“Unlike traditional implant surgery, MIDI™ pre-treatment, computer-guided planning helps us avoid steps that previously led to a more traumatic type of healing,” adds Amsterdam Dental’s Caleb J. Cross, D.M.D, M.B.A. “Most patients are pleasantly surprised.”
Like Amy, Bill K. needed a tooth extracted and implant placed. “I’d had dental work before but was fascinated by the team’s excitement with this MIDI™ technique,” he says. In describing his case, he recounts the doctors’ words—“delicate” and “gentle”—and remembers being comforted by the informative, step-by-step explanation throughout the procedure. “Drs. Fraiman and Cross were extremely thorough and welcomed all my questions,” he says. “Their enthusiasm was contagious.”
Dr. Fraiman adds, “People want to leave the office looking the same as when they arrived. In Bill’s case, as in others, we are able to use the original tooth as a temporary while awaiting the permanent crown—extracting it, placing the implant and fabricating the tooth to fit temporarily. No one will know the difference.”
The End Result
Restorations are all about the most finite of details. From the state-of-the-art CT scanner to the computer-guided surgical planning software and in-office dental laboratory, Amsterdam Dental’s dentists have no need to outsource any part of the implant process.
According to Dr. Fraiman, the accuracy and precision of dental implant placement is paramount to the achievement of an aesthetic result. “Success requires close collaboration between the surgical specialist to place implants accurately and restorative specialist to reconstruct implants aesthetically and functionally,” he says.
The knowledge of both specialties provides insight on how the implant placement and restoration influence each other. A dual-trained dental specialist is uniquely qualified to provide the best possible result, and Amsterdam Dental Group has four such dentists who have all completed postdoctoral specialty training in both Periodontics and Fixed Prosthodontics at the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine.
“My experience at Amsterdam was truly incredible,” Amy says—yes, with a big smile. “Dr. Baumgarten explained the entire process in a way I could understand to ease my fears which couldn’t have been better. The entire staff took the time to know me as a person. I wasn’t just a case.”
Amsterdam Dental Group
100 S. Broad Street, Suite 2000
Philadelphia, PA 19110
1800 E. Lancaster Ave., Suite G
Paoli, PA 19301