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Computed Tomography Scan

The Computed Tomography Scan (The 3D Tomography) generates a three-dimensional representation of an object by taking several two-dimensional images of a specific area from different angles, and then overlapping them.

The CT scan is mostly used in medical procedures; it provides a more detailed image than any regular x-ray, as it is taken from several different angles as opposed to just one radiation beam.

The images taken are sent to a computer which will generate the three dimensional representation of the area that the medical professional needs to evaluate. The tomography device gathers uninterrupted images; by having no intervals between each capture, the accuracy of the imagery is definite.

In dentistry, the CT scan is used to evaluate dental implants, cysts, tumors, surgical procedures, and bone condition. The jaw is composed of the mandible and the maxilla; both these bone structures hold the upper and the lower teeth. In patients that have lost one, several or all teeth, bone loss is very common; an option to replace the missing teeth is dental implants.

Sometimes dentists will need to perform a CT scan to determine the condition of the bone and the possibility of placing implants; as regular individual or panoramic x-rays will not show bone quality or width and height of the jaw. Actually, the placement of dental implants is said to be the motive of the development of this new technology and the study of bone and other important structures in the jaw.

The main aspects evaluated with a CT scan for dental implants placement are: quantity and quality of the bone in both upper and lower jaw, height and thickness of the upper and lower jaw, location of the mandibular canal, maxillary sinuses, and incisive foramen. All of these aspects will provide accuracy in choosing the optimal site for implant placement in each patient.

Usually, dental implant surgeons like the bone to be at least 5 mm wide and 7 mm high to place implants. However, each patient´s case is different, which is why a thorough evaluation and examination of the patient, along with regular x-rays and a CT scan, is necessary for the doctor to determine the possibility of placing implants, and their specific position.

By: Prisma Dental

For any questions about our lab services you can contact us at or to our phone numbers: (506) 2291-5151 in Costa Rica or toll free at 866-741-8194 in United States.

Computed Tomography Scan
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