Dental implants rethought

Available in both one- and two-piece configuration, the novel Patent™ dental implant system is based on the central idea that “less is more”—fewer surgical steps and no screws or other components that are not necessarily needed. In this interview, Frédéric Wehrli, Director of Product Management, reveals the details about the fully customisable ceramic implant system.

“You snooze, you lose” or “the last shall be first”— what applies more to you? Why are you only now entering the market again?

As the old saying goes, “timing is everything”—not missing the perfect time and being rewarded with the perfect thing in return is of utmost importance. As opposed to our competitors, the Patent™ dental implant system underwent a successful “proof of concept” and is now mature enough to be marketed. Furthermore, we believe that now is the perfect time to share this great technology with the industry and our patients. Today’s patients demand sustainable well-being and we are the only ones able to guarantee this.

Ceramic implants still constitute a niche on the dental implant market. One of the main criticisms is that there is still a great lack of long-term clinical studies and scientific documentation. What’s your take on that?

You are right in saying that ceramic implants still occupy a niche in the dental implant market. Yet even before the COVID-19 pandemic, one of the most important global trends in dentistry was the increasing desire of patients to improve their overall systemic health and well-being. As a direct consequence, patients are looking for “metal- free” alternatives. When it comes to research, Zircon Medical Management is a ceramic implant manufacturer that has dedicated its efforts to generating long-term, peer-reviewed clinical data. We want to make sure that we can provide solid evidence of success both to the dentists using our Patent™ dental implant system as well as to their patients.

Where is your implant system positioned?

Our Patent™ dental implant system represents the beginning of a new era for dental implants. We will continue to focus our efforts on relevant research and development in order to sustainably provide well-documented solutions for our clinicians and our patients in the long term. The two-piece Patent™ dental implant system is the only commercially available system with published long-term clinical studies for this specific implant design (according to Röhling et al.) that show successful results.

What’s the backstory of your company?

The idea for our Patent™ dental implant system (formerly ZV3) was born 18 years ago. In 2006 we received CE certification and the manufacturing process was patented. In 2009 we introduced the two-piece implant. In 2014 a retrospective study of the University of Groningen in the Netherlands with our one- and two-piece implants was published. This was followed by the publication of a prospective study in 2017 by the University of Düsseldorf conducted over the course of two years with our two-piece implant system. As I mentioned earlier, this is the only prospective study available on two-piece ceramic implants. Both studies show success rates of over 96 per cent. We also have a large number of documented clinical cases, which are also peer-reviewed. Hence, today we can look back on a long history with a mature “proof of concept” and more than 10,000 placed implants.

What sets your system apart?

Our system has several striking features that our customers benefit from. The entire implant system is reduced to the minimum in order to reach its maximum potential. The initial investment for users is relatively low because, since only a few instruments are required and there is no need for additional implant components. The implant design concept is biomimetic and therefore our customers do not require additional training, which helps to reduce actual chair times and the overall number of treatment visits. We also have a patented manufacturing process by which we are able to manufacture ultra-strong, hydrophilic implants. We believe that these are the reasons why there is such a great deal of documented success in our long-term studies.

For which indications is your system suitable?

With Patent™ you can treat all restorative conditions such as single crowns, bridges, telescopic reconstructions and bar constructions. This offers the restorative dentist a vast spectrum and a high degree of flexibility without having to invest heavily in prefabricated components and instruments. There is a growing trend that dentistry plays a crucial part in the general and systemic health of patients.

What’s the significance of ceramic implantology in this context?

Most clinicians have known for some time now that there is a direct link between oral health and general, systemic health and well-being. Technological and medical advances have made it possible to prolong and improve life and, as a result, the “older” part of the world’s population is growing rapidly. These people demand a better and more vital quality of life. Today, many patients reject older technologies and lean towards “metal-free” solutions instead. Ceramic implantology can meet these demands.

Your system appears to be quite sophisticated and well-documented. Where and how can potential users get to know it?

Thank you very much. We are very proud of our history and scientific heritage. We will continue to build on our success and provide even more solutions in the future. We invite all dentists and dental technicians to learn more about us at www.mypatent.com. There you will find an abundance of information on our products and how you can reach us.

Thank you for the conversation, Mr. Wehrli.

Image credit: Zircon Medical Management

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