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Machine cuts time for dental crowns
Updated: 4/7/2008 2:00:40 PM

A professor of operative dentistry and biomaterials at the Louisiana State University School of Dentistry has developed a machine that can significantly cut the time it takes to fit a dental crown.

Traditionally patients have had to make two trips to the dentist to have a dental crown fitted - a procedure that is used to strengthen a weaken tooth, correct discolored or misshapen teeth or cover a dental implant - according to TheDenverChannel.com.

Now however, Professor Alan Ripps has reduced the time the procedure takes to one visit of under two hours, using a machine that cuts and prepares the crown in just 15 minutes.

The dentist creates a three-dimensional image of the tooth for the machine to read - the tooth is then prepared with a material that translates to the computer the X-Y coordinates of the tooth, to create a perfect fit.

Although this new technique will save time for both dentist and patients, Professor Ripps warns that it does not come cheaply, with the machines costing around $100,000 each.

Generally dental crowns are made of porcelain, which is strong and natural-looking.

© 2008 Brafton Inc.


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