The radiography department of The Westmead Centre for Oral Health, one of NSW's two dental teaching hospitals, is now offering i-CAT cone beam scans to patients referred by private practitioners.
"We've had the i-CAT cone beam imaging system in place for some time and have gained considerable experience in its use," said Mr Bruce Waters, Senior Radiographer at the Westmead Centre for Oral Health. "The level of information three dimensional imaging offers dentists allows for much more accurate and predictable outcomes to be achieved and the technology is growing in popularity.
"As a result, we are now accepting referrals both from inside Westmead and from private practitioners. We're attracting referrals across the board, but particularly for implant work-ups, orthodontic assessments, lower third molar localisation and for TMJ dysfunction."
Mr Waters said that the scan data is provided on a CD that includes reader software. For new referrers, a guide to operate the software is included. In addition, hardcopy prints of of specific views can also be requested.
"We provide viewing software on the CD and the DICOM data will also work with appropriate third-party software. You can usually track the inferior alveolar nerve or even re-create a lateral ceph or OPG-lookalike. While most of the images we print for clinicians are in 1 or 2mm slices, the actual scans occur at 0.40mm voxels down to 0.20mm voxels. This DICOM data is also compatible with Simplant or NobelGuide.
"We have referral pads which we are happy to post out on request and if reports are required, we try to arrange a 24 hour turn-around. Plus, we bulk bill the scans on Medicare which makes the service particularly attractive."