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The sleep apnea market presents some unique challenges for labs. LMT explains what you need to know to navigate this niche.
Read More 8 minute read
An estimated 25 million adults in the U.S. suffer from obstructive sleep apnea. Oral appliances have proven to be a viable option for treatment and a huge opportunity for dentists and labs, but there are numerous complexities in the market.
Read More 9 minute read
Henry Schein’s Labnext is a cloud-based lab management software specifically designed for digital dentistry. The open system integrates with a variety of scanners, design software and practice management software packages and is tightly integrated with the company’s DDX (Digital Dental Exchange).
DDX is a HIPAA-compliant, web-based digital portal that helps labs accept digital files, manage casework digitally and create new lines of communication with clients. The dentists can submit all their digital scans, X-rays and photos via DDX. The laboratory can customize the case submission form and require the dentist to enter specific information, eliminating the need for data entry in the lab and minimizing errors and follow up.Streamline WorkflowWhen a dentist submits a case, the lab receives a notification in the DDX or Labnext software or via email and logs in to start the case. “When I get a case via DDX, an email pops up on my phone and I know right away that I have a...LMT Communications, Inc. · October 21 at 5:10 pm
Evident software helps the laboratory streamline its production workflow, from enabling dentists to submit cases and photos through the lab’s website, coordinating scheduling to maximize production capacity, to shipping and billing the final case.
“With so many details to keep track of in the lab, if you miss even a small detail, it can easily lead to a larger problem. Using Evident, our workflow is error-proof because it has numerous flags to indicate when something starts to go wrong,” says Jayme Hong, CEO, IDOC Dental Lab, Orange, CA.
For example, if a case gets delayed in production, the software has an internal alert system that immediately sends a notification to the designated person. The software can generate a “to do” list and email reminders for each technician so tasks don’t slip through the cracks.
Another aspect of Evident that Hong likes: it generates packaging lists including the patient’s name, ship data and the contents of the shipping...LMT Communications, Inc. · October 21 at 5:03 pm
This month, Glidewell Laboratories is upgrading its CloudPoint System to expand the indications; in addition to full contour crowns, bridges, inlays and onlays, you can now fabricate copings, bridge frameworks and split files.
The system features the CloudPoint FastScan scanner with CloudPoint FastDesign software and the CloudPoint Web Portal, all of which were developed by Glidewell Laboratories’ R&D department. The system can be purchased two ways:
The Closed System includes all of the above and your restorations are milled exclusively by Glidewell: full contour crowns, bridges, inlays and onlays are milled in BruxZir® and BruxZir Anterior Solid Zirconia; copings, bridge frameworks and split files are available in Prismatik CZ™ as well as printed in castable resin. Designed for the small lab getting into digital technology, this is the lower-priced option and there is a one-time fee of $11,399+.
The Open System also includes the scanner, software and portal but allows...LMT Communications, Inc. · October 20 at 3:03 pm
Launched this month, Crownbox is an online marketplace where any laboratory or milling center can connect to buy and sell dental milling and printing services. “Crownbox is like an eBay for our industry, connecting buyers and sellers of dental CAD/CAM. It’s a venue for companies that have invested in CNC milling and 3D printing equipment to sell these services and for labs that would like more options when it comes to outsourcing partners. We’ve created a platform that improves access for everyone,” says Alex Frangadakis, Crownbox Founder and CEO.
Crownbox enables laboratories to order milled abutments, bars, crowns, printed models and partials, etc., from multiple milling centers simultaneously. Users can drag-and-drop .stl files, enter case details, submit orders and track cases at different locations and order status all within a single platform.
For sellers, Crownbox offers a new marketing opportunity and distribution channel. Milling centers can set up a free...LMT Communications, Inc. · October 20 at 2:14 pm
The latest version of Evolution Software from Atlanta Based Systems (ABS), released last month, has expanded the existing communications features, adding more automatic notification options to further facilitate and track digital communications.
Automatic notifications can be sent via email or pop-up windows in the software to multiple users at the lab when, for example, a case has arrived or the dentist has added a new image or note to the case file. Likewise, users can set up automatic email alerts so dentist-clients know when a case is received or shipped.
“I'm all about automation, and we use these emails to make sure our customers are receiving updates from us on our cases. For example, if we need a new lower impression, we send the dentist a case ‘hold’ notification and type a note regarding what we need. Automatically, an email is sent to the primary contact for the account and a record is saved in the file,” says Lee Coursey, Managing Partner,...LMT Communications, Inc. · October 19 at 5:23 pm
FullContour Design Center’s new online platform, DropDental.com, is a custom, cloud-based, drag-and-drop file transfer system that gives its customers a one-stop source for uploading, ordering and managing all their digital restorations. Launched in September, the platform features two key changes to help streamline laboratories’ digital workflow:
Manufacturing partner integration. Previously, FullContour would receive a lab’s scan file, design the case, and send it back to the lab for fabrication; the lab would either process the case in house or submit it to a third-party. Now, the user can have the finished design automatically sent to the manufacturing partner of his choice at no extra charge via DropDental.com.
“Some of our customers were logging into as many as eight different manufacturer websites a day to get their cases fabricated,” says Brandon Camping, CTO, who spent seven years at Apple. “DropDental.com consolidates all of a lab’s...LMT Communications, Inc. · October 19 at 5:12 pm
Three years ago, CAP (formerly Custom Automated Prosthetics) began developing software to make its milling center as efficient as possible. Its goal: to automate many of the steps between each process of the CAD/CAM workflow and eliminate duplicate data entry into their lab management software and again in the scanning department.
The result: CAPZilla, a workflow automation platform that streamlines many functions within the digital fabrication process. For example:
A barcode scan of the work ticket at the model and die scan station adds all essential information into all the appropriate data fields, saving time and eliminating human error at this step.
Once scanned, a designer can scan the work ticket or select the case in the CAPZilla case overview list. The prescription and customer design preferences are displayed and then the order is opened in 3Shape Designer. After the design is complete, CAPZilla automatically moves the case to milling or prompts the designer to produce...LMT Communications, Inc. · October 15 at 2:52 pm
Based on extensive customer feedback, LabStar released an upgrade that includes over 200 new production line management features. “Small changes in workflow can yield great changes in production efficiency. We’ve done a complete overhaul to further simplify manufacturing processes and ensure consistent, on-time manufacturing in the laboratory,” says Jeff Noles, CEO of LabStar and a former lab owner.
Released in August, the upgraded cloud-based software includes a tablet-friendly interface so technicians can scan material barcodes to log them into cases, view and add file attachments, and record case notes from their tablet.
Other advantages of the upgraded software include:
Flexible scheduling: You can easily schedule and reschedule tasks, technicians, ship dates and due dates. The combination case logic allows scheduling for different restorations on the same work ticket. It also gives you the option to designate specific tasks as “incompressible,” meaning...LMT Communications, Inc. · October 15 at 2:38 pm
Argen Digital’s ArgenLink is a new cloud-based, drag and drop file transfer system customers can use to order SLM, printed and milled restorations, temps and digital models. It streamlines the ordering process by allowing laboratories to export cases directly from 3Shape’s Dental Manager into ArgenLink in seconds, without any data entry. (It will soon be available for exocad and DentalWings.)
All the order information—from lab customer details to manufacturing preferences and material selection—is dynamically populated in the system. A dashboard offers real-time updates throughout the manufacturing process, including case status, package tracking, case reorders and cancellations. Laboratories also have the ability to batch upload files of various material types and restoration sizes concurrently, including split files.
“Previously, we had to do a lot of data entry and upload the files one at a time. Now, we just enter the case numbers, drag and drop the...LMT Communications, Inc. · October 14 at 11:31 am
LMT profiles nine software innovations—many of them new or recently upgraded—that are helping labs upload files faster, reap the benefits of the cloud, increase efficiency, track metrics, accept digital impressions, outsource more easily and enhance their customer service and communication efforts.LMT Communications, Inc. · October 14 at 10:28 am
The results of LMT’s State of Digital Technology 2015 survey are in! Eighty percent of respondents rate their all-ceramic workload as “good” or “booming.”
As part of our ongoing State of the Industry 2015 coverage, LMT Editors visited the world’s largest dental show to bring you the scoop on the latest product and process innovations worldwide—including digital dentures, laser milling and more—and what else is coming down the pike for the U.S. market.
Read More 21 minute read
Fifty-five percent of our State of the Industry 2015 survey respondents have recently changed their business model to increase profitability, gain new clients and be more competitive. Five of our respondents share their stories.
Read More 6 minute read
CAP is now Amann Girrbach’s premier partner in North America, selling the complete line of AG equipment, material and tools, as well as enhancing training and customer support.
The first part of LMT’s comprehensive, multi-issue State of the Industry 2015 coverage offers an in-depth look at the key trends impacting laboratory operators today.
Read More 11 minute read
- November 2014
LMT taps into the expertise of 20 laboratory owners and managers from all size labs who’ve successfully incorporated digital technology into their operations, offering real-life experiences and tips on what we all wish we would have known before taking the plunge.
Read More 19 minute read
- September 2014
- May 2014
- March 2014
Foreign Dental Work Put to Test, an investigative report about lead found in restorations made in China was the talk of the industry when it aired in February 2008 on Ohio’s WBNS 10TV. The story covered an Ohio woman who had experienced pain and infection in her jaw after her dentist placed an ill-fitting, three-unit PFM bridge the previous year. After learning the bridge was made in China, she had the bridge removed and tested for hazardous materials, and lead (160ppm) was found in the restoration.
In addition, the TV station ordered eight PFM crowns from four labs in China and also had them tested; one of them tested positive for lead (210ppm).
The media coverage fueled objections to offshore outsourcing and even breathed new life into the debate about mandatory laboratory certification and registration. The ADA announced it would do its own independent testing and released its findings a year later: scientists analyzed 44 different porcelain powders and 102 finished PFM crowns...
Read More 1 minute read
- February 2014
In October 1985, amidst rumblings that U.S. laboratories were farming work out to offshore laboratories, LMT brought the issue out into the open. Our interview with Jerry Doviack, CDT, Owner of California-based Continental Dental Ceramics, took readers inside Interdent, his facility in the Philippines and sparked intense industry debate.
In the interview, Doviack explained his strategy behind setting up offshore production to provide outsourcing services to laboratories around the world, saying it wouldn’t take jobs away because the local laboratory would still provide a vital service to its dentist-clients. Still, readers spoke out about what they perceived as a threat to their businesses and their employees, as well as concern about the American economy.
Today, Interdent in Manila has grown to a staff of 700 and services several hundred labs in more than 75 countries. And, although the debate rages on, offshore outsourcing has come out of the shadows with many other offshore laboratories...
Read More 1 minute read
- November 2013
Last year, Bob Iuliano, CDT, invested about $80,000 in CAD/CAM equipment—and he hasnât looked back since.
- October 2013
The subcontracting market is strong, thanks to the ever-growing demand for digitally fabricated restorations and steady demand for cast partial frameworks.
- September 2013
A year ago, Whip Mix Corp. promoted its Vice President of Manufacturing, Jim Myers, to President of the company, succeeding Allen Steinbock, the grandson of Whip Mix Founder Edmund Steinbock, Sr. This promotion makes Myers the first non-family member President in the company's history. LMT travelled to Louisville, KY, to talk with Myers about his new position and where the company is headed.
LMT: As President, how has your role changed?
Myers: For 11 years, my priority was our manufacturing processes; now, it's more focused on customer needs and opportunities. I have much more interaction with our sales team and Whip Mix customers.
LMT: What stands out to you regarding your customers?
Myers: The most striking thing about our laboratory customers is their level of energy, dedication and desire to improve their businesses. Rather than hoping digital technology won't affect them, they're rolling up their sleeves, re-inventing themselves and embracing new technology.
LMT: Tell us more...
Read More 4 minute read