The world of science fiction slowly becomes a reality. The extensive development of new technologies, software and artificial intelligence has started to deliver results in the field of dentistry. We all remember the excitement within the scientific community and the public when a robotic surgery system called da Vinci was introduced in order to assist surgeons to perform more precise and less invasive surgical procedures. The news regarding a robot dentist, that successfully performed implant surgery without any human assistance come from China.
China is facing a significant lack of qualified personnel that can professionally perform dental procedures. In addition, patients in China are at the risk of serious complications following dental interventions since the significant proportion of these interventions is performed by unqualified personnel. Therefore, China decided to invest in the development of new solutions that would help resolve these issues.
The above mentioned robotic system was the product of an extensive investigation that lasted four years. The dental robot was developed by the University of Beijing and the Fourth Military Medical University Stomatological Hospital in China. Dr. Zhao Yimin, who is employed at the hospital where the intervention was performed stated that the robot was had to be developed in order to decrease the incidence of human error and overcome China’s shortage of properly educated dentists. The procedure performed by a robotic system involved placement of the two new teeth that were developed by 3D printing into a mouth of a female patient. The procedure went well without complications and without any assistance from human dentists. The team of dentists was present but did not interfere during the full course of the intervention.
The robot was pre-programmed with inputs such as the position, depth, and angle of implants, but was able to re-calculate and make the necessary adjustment according to the patient’s movements. The whole procedure lasted for approximately one hour. In recent years, the development of robots designed to assist human dentists has increased dramatically. They are used during the practical work or during the training of new dentists.
The United States Food and Drug Administration has recently approved the robot called Yomi that was developed to help human dentists during implant procedures. There are also robots designed to perform brain surgeries or interventions inside the human eye.
These gadgets are exciting, but they aren’t even close to replacing a qualified dental professional like Dr. Dan Matthews. If you need dental procedures today, visit our Austin Dental Office (and not a robot).