Tools of the trade: ITero Element 5D


Estimated reading time: 2 minutes


by Dr James Yang, Medland Dental, Annerley, QLD

Up until recently, we were using PVS with all our restorative, crown and implant work. Now that technology has evolved to the point where a digital platform is adequate to serve our needs, we decided to switch to the iTero Element 5D.

What’s good about it

At present, this is the latest iteration of iTero Element and we’ve had it for about two months. It has a pretty steep learning curve, but I’ve been getting good results. Crown margins fit so well that they’re almost perfect. The bite requires little adjustment and the contact between neighbouring teeth is excellent.

One thing I really like is that patients can see the results quickly. It makes it much easier to explain what’s happening in their mouth. Most clients are very impressed by the technology.

It’s also a great time-saver. A single tooth prep is much faster compared to using PVS. While I’m getting more proficient with the scanner, if there’s a discrepancy in the results, it only takes five minutes to re-scan the patient.

There can be no doubt that digital scanning is the way of the future. Eventually, we plan to use digital scans with the majority of our cases.

What’s good about it

There are situations where it can be hard to get a clear scan. If the angles are tricky, the scanner head can be challenging to move around into the right position. This usually happens with undercuts, deep marginal preps, and when trying to scan the distal aspect of a tooth in front. Scanning multiple teeth is more time consuming than taking an impression with PVS. I think there will always be a place for PVS in our practice.

What’s good about it

Henry Schein


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