Virtual Analog and Intraoral Scan Bodies

The digital dental technical sector is growing at an exponential rate thanks to the latest intraoral scanning systems.

During recent years, the number of intraoral scanning systems has increased considerably.Between 2016 and 2017, the demand for intraoral scanning processes grew strongly and this market is expanding fast, with demand not only for cosmetic or orthodontic processes but also for implant procedures.

Nowadays intraoral scanning is being increasingly used on implants and is decidedly less traumatic for both patients and their tissues.

Intraoral scan bodies are classified as measuring devices.

Their function is the same as the laboratory equivalent, which is to identify a precise coordinate within the virtual environment, but their shape must comply with a minimal tolerance (less than +/- 0.005 micron in relation to the CAD library) both vertically and horizontally.

CAD 4D offers its line of intraoral scan bodies created exclusively for the creation of screw retained abutments, screw retained single crowns, bridges and small structures directly screw coupled to implants.

It is important to be realistic and accept the limitations of the various intraoral scanning systems: today no technology available is able to deliver high-level precision for an all-on-6, all-on-4 or Toronto Bridge, for example.

It is well known that excessive tolerance in directly screw retained prosthesis manufacture can create both tensile and compression stresses in the implant fixture, leading to the risk of fracture of prosthetic screws or the implant fixture itself, or serious problems for osseointegration.

Therefore, for minor directly coupled implant rehabilitations, use of an intraoral scanner is very beneficial, because it is able to provide precise but above all repeatable results.

In many prosthesis cases, it is necessary to develop physical models for better management of the prosthetic fixture; with CAD software and the model builder/model creator functions, virtual models can be created and produced as real models using 3D printing.

Nowadays, SLS or DLP 3D printing provides a good surface quality, printed with very thin layers (0.025 to 0.050 micron).

With the aid of the model builder/model creator functions, it is possible to create virtual models including the coupling to analogs, which however must have an external form which allows them to be fitted and secured in a single position.

CAD 4D has developed its own line of analogs for prototyping, specially designed for use with intraoral scan bodies.

Regardless of the type of prosthetic fixture, when managing the digital data flow intraoral scan bodies establish a coordinate in the 3D environment, which is then also used for positioning of the virtual analogs, allowing the creation of physical models with the geometry of the real analog.