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Sending Digital Impressions

Sending Digital Impressions

A digital workflow gives your practice a competitive advantage.

Easy Process

Step One. Send Digital Impression

Glidewell Laboratories is expertly qualified to assist clinicians who utilize digital impression systems. The lab employs computer-aided technology in nearly every step of production, ensuring that prescribed restorations are consistently well-fitting and able to be fabricated from the most modern materials. For both traditional and implant restorations, Glidewell Laboratories accepts scans for the Sirona CEREC® platforms, the Align Technolgy iTero, Carestream Dental’s CS 3500, PLANMECA CAD/CAM SOLUTIONS E4D Technologies PlanScan®, the 3M True Definition Scanner, and 3Shape’s TRIOS®.

Once a clinician has captured an impression with their scanning unit, the data can be transferred to Glidewell Laboratories. For systems that utilize proprietary connection portals, the data is sent to Glidewell Laboratories through the approved, established connection as shown in the respective system’s manual. For open systems, clinicians can download the scan data from their impression unit and transfer it directly to Glidewell Laboratories through our “My Account” interface.

To send a case for a traditional or implant restoration through Sirona Connect, follow the standard Sirona scan protocol. Select your restoration preferences, and send scans of the prepared teeth with adjacent teeth, buccal bite and the opposing arch. For anterior cases, an additional scan of the preoperative condition or a scan with the temporary in place is recommended to achieve the best overall design.

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Manufacturer: Sirona

After receiving a scan file for a traditional or implant restoration, clinicians can transmit the data to an approved laboratory by selecting “Send” on the screen. Contact Align Technology directly to add Glidewell Laboratories to your list of “Favorite Labs.”

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Manufacturer: Align Technology Inc.

Send your 3Shape TRIOS scans to Glidewell Laboratories using 3Shape Communicate™. TRIOS order forms can be customized to match specific information requirements and offerings from Glidewell Laboratories, making it easy to create new orders, attach 2-D images and convey all case aspects to our lab. Minutes after your scanning is complete, our lab technicians can receive your TRIOS digital impressions and immediately start designing your traditional or implant restoration. When your design is complete, a 3-D model will automatically be sent to the 3Shape Communicate site for you to review before we begin fabricating your restoration.

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Manufacturer: 3Shape

3M True Definition scan files can be sent to Glidewell Laboratories for the design and fabrication of traditional or implant restorations. True Definition Scanner users can contact 3M ESPE directly to add Glidewell Laboratories to your list of connected labs.

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Manufacturer: 3M ESPE

Planmeca PlanScan users can send scans via the E4D®Sky network in order to export case files in an open file format (.stl). Upload the digital files to the “My Account” section of our website.

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Manufacturer: PLANMECA CAD/CAM SOLUTIONS E4D Technologies

Carestream CS 3500 users can send impression data in an open file format (.stl) to laboratories around the world. Glidewell Laboratories is a Carestream Dental Preferred Lab and is equipped to handle your case fabrication needs.

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Manufacturer: Carestream

Digital files can be uploaded in the “My Account” section of our website. If you are a current customer not registered for this feature, or if you are a new doctor, call us at 800-854-7256 to set up your account.

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Manufacturer: Glidewell Laboratories

Step Two. Digital Case Design

Once your scan data has been transferred to the digital network at Glidewell Laboratories, a specialized team of dental technicians performs a small clinical evaluation to verify that each case is ready for production. Approved cases are then distributed to the appropriate technical department based on the material and restoration type requested by the clinician.

At Glidewell Laboratories, nearly 100 percent of case design is handled with dental design software. These purpose-built programs enable our experienced dental technicians to shape every aspect of a restoration. Our decades of traditional lab experience educate every click, ensuring precise fit, function and esthetics. This all-digital design process guarantees a higher accuracy in the final restoration because the errors inherent to traditional impressions and the pouring of stone models are completely removed. In fact, most of our modern production workflows can be completed entirely without a physical model ever being produced. Clinicians who wish to verify their restorations on a model can still request one from the laboratory.

Step Three. Digital Production

After the digital restoration design is complete, the design file is transferred to the appropriate production team based on the type of material and restoration requested by the clinician. Below are brief outlines of the various processes and technologies employed across a variety of our lab services.

Regardless of whether a clinician sends a case digitally or with traditional impressions, all restorations at Glidewell Laboratories are fabricated with the same cutting-edge technologies and techniques. It is our mission to bring the benefits gained from these technologies to clinicians and patients across the world.

Monolithic restorations are milled from solid blanks of ceramic material using 4- and 5-axis milling machines. These ceramic restorations then undergo firing processes to establish their long-lasting durability and natural-looking appearance. Final restoration characterization is still completed by hand to establish desired esthetics.

The design files associated with PFM and full-cast cases are forwarded to 3-D printers, which extrude wax or plastic material to construct restorations layer by layer. These printed restorations are then submerged in investment material to make a reverse mold of the approved restoration design, into which the desired material can be pressed. Similar to monolithic cases, the final shading and characterization for PFM restorations is completed by hand.

Components necessary for implant cases are manufactured in-house utilizing a separate series of milling machines, which are the same as those used to produce components for luxury-brand Swiss watches. Our ISO-certified implant manufacturing facility enables us to deliver implant restorations of the highest quality at an affordable price.

The scan data for removable, partial and preventive appliances is utilized to create a digital model of the patient. This digital model is then 3-D–printed, creating a physical model on which traditional lab techniques can be used to create the requested device.

Step Four. Case Tracking

Fill out the form below to register for daily case summaries. You’ll receive notifications when the status of you case changes, such as when we finalize your case or send it out for delivery.

Digital Impression Benefits

Clinicians who adopt chairside digital impression systems into their practices are positioned to receive enhanced benefits from Glidewell Laboratories. Adding to the inherent advantages of instantaneous case data transmission and the removed need for impression materials and trays, clinicians will receive a $20 per-unit savings on BruxZir® Solid Zirconia, BruxZir Anterior, Obsidian® ceramic and IPS e.max® cases and a $40 per-unit savings on Inclusive® Custom Abutment and screw-retained implant crown cases. What’s more, without the delay of inbound impression shipping and with the prioritized all-digital workflow, clinicians can expect their restorations to be fabricated and returned to their offices in a significantly reduced time period.

The all-digital workflow employed at Glidewell Laboratories has been proven to greatly reduce the number of crown remakes for margin, fit and occlusion issues. Further, clinicians using intraoral scanners can avoid the potential for distortion found in traditional impression materials and stone laboratory models. For the clinician this means that cases are delivered correctly and consistently, exactly as prescribed.

“We strive to drive down restorative costs and expand patient access to affordable dentistry.”

— Jim Glidewell, CDT, President/CEO