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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 37-39

Robotics in dentistry

Department of Oral Pathology, PSM College of Dental Science and Research, Thrissur, Kerala, India

Date of Web Publication18-Nov-2019

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Pallavi K Das
Department of Oral Pathology, PSM College of Dental Science and Research, Akkikavu, Bypass Road, Thrissur - 680 519, Kerala
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijohr.ijohr_32_19

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Robots are one of the most sophisticated creations of human. In many ways, they are far ahead of their creator. Their unmatchable precision and fatigue-free working ability can be incorporated into our field, which will ease our job. However, their application in dentistry is still a less traveled road. The main aim of this article is to briefly review the applications of robotics in dentistry.

Keywords: Artificial intelligence, dental nanorobots, endo micro-robot, robots, sensor-equipped implant setup, simroid, surgical robots

How to cite this article:
Das PK, Hari S, Nair S, Kumar A. Robotics in dentistry. Indian J Oral Health Res 2019;5:37-9

How to cite this URL:
Das PK, Hari S, Nair S, Kumar A. Robotics in dentistry. Indian J Oral Health Res [serial online] 2019 [cited 2023 Jun 1];5:37-9. Available from: https://www.ijohr.org/text.asp?2019/5/2/37/271146

  Introduction Top

Humans are considered the finest creatures on the earth. Ability to communicate and share information has always been our strongest trait as a species. With the advancement of technologies, the world has become much smaller. We are able to share information to a vast audience without any delay irrespective of time, space, and distance. In spite of all these technological and scientific advancements, distance limits the growth of many fields including medicine. Skilled professionals are lacking in many places at the needed time. Transfer of skill and experience, especially with artificial intelligence (AI), is becoming a mainstay in technology. Through robots, dentists can work more precisely and stress-free minimizing any risks. Robotics is the branch of technology that deals with the design, construction, operation, and application of robots as well as computer system for their control, sensory feedback, and information processing. The term robotics was introduced by the writer Issac Asimov in his science fiction book, I robot, published in 1950.[1]

  Artificial Intelligence in Diagnosis Top

Correct diagnosis leads to proper treatment planning and prognosis. Artificial neural networks (ANN) and genetic algorithms (GA) along with the input of some basic logic are the different techniques of AI that are being used in dentistry.[2] ANN can be used in cases of temporomandibular derangements, where the ultimate diagnosis is based on a clinician's view on clinical and imaging data. Hence, trained ANNs can give a precise diagnosis as they see in a broader and deeper perspective. GA and ANN can be used as a reliable tool for locating the site and size of unerupted teeth with unmatchable perfection.[3] Orthodontic evaluation of cephalograms and craniofacial skeletal and dental abnormalities are more perfect by a trained robot. This helps a clinician for better treatment planning.[4] ANN can also be used for precise reading of various head-and-neck imaging modalities.[5]

  Endo Micro Robot Top

Success in endodontics demands great perfection. Even an experienced hand can make defects such as perforation, canal ledging, apical foramen translocation, and over instrumentation. It is humanly impossible to always perform a perfect endodontic treatment. Thus to overcome this, we now learn on advanced endodontic technology by applying advanced engineering and computer knowledge.[6],[7] Micro endo robots have inbuilt microsensors which can sense accurate canal length and root apex. Vacuum attachments are capable of sucking the remnants from the canals and are a far better irrigant. Thus, micro-robots nullify even the slightest error and offer precise diagnosis and treatment.

  Dental Nanorobots Top

Nanorobotics is the technology of creating machines or robots at or close to the microscopic scale of 2 nm.[8] They can be useful in precise cavity preparation with perfect removal of caries and the maintenance of healthy tooth structure, proper retention, and resistance features far beyond the skill of a most perfect clinician. They control tooth sensitivity by carrying tiny molecules into the dentinal tubules and perfectly sealing them.[9]

  Surgical Robots Top

This technology includes robots for local surgery and telesurgery and audiovisual telecommunication for telemedicine and teleconsultation. Robotic systems with integrated imaging for computer-enhanced surgery and virtual reality simulators enhanced with haptic feedback for surgical training.[10] A surgical robot system for maxillofacial surgery has been developed. Here, the surgeon communicates with the robots, and the robot performs the preprogrammed job.[11]

  Sensor-Equipped Implant Setup Top

Dental implants are being used by a large number of patients compared to the past. The present implant system demands good hand skill and control over the instruments. Furthermore, the implant drill is highly expensive. There are a lot of cases in history with implants being placed improperly, causing damage to the hard and soft tissues of the patient. To overcome this, a new system of computer-assisted surgery for oral implantology applications has been developed. It includes preoperative and intraoperative procedures. The preoperative procedures include three-dimensional (3D) images of the target area which helps the clinician to have the best anatomical knowledge of his site of interest.[12] Intraoperative procedures include 3D orientation of the position of the surgical instrument displayed on a monitor. This helps in proper navigation and decision making with high accuracy.[13] Rosy is a computer-aided intraoperative guidance system for implant surgery.[14]

  Robots for Training Purposes Top

Budding dentists for their training purposes use “PHANTOM” models. It helps by giving the feel of working with an actual human. However, they highly differ from a normal patient. Clinical training on volunteer patients has many ethical issues, as well. Thus, a more realistic clinical training is achieved using robots as dental patients. These robots simulate a variety of patient gestures and responses giving the trainees a real-time patient experience. Showa Hanako, Geminoid DK, and Simroid are examples of such patient robots.[15],[16],[17]

  Will Artificial Intelligence Replaces Natural Intelligence? Top

Well, it is beyond arguments that AI is far ahead of natural intelligence in accuracy, less time consumption, and standardization of procedures, completely replacing a clinician is not possible. It is not only about a proper diagnosis but also about correlating all the clinical and psychological factors of the patient. A good understanding between the patient and a clinician aids in speedy recovery. AI can assist a clinician in a number of ways to achieve this.

Robotics is a breakthrough in the field of technology, and its applications in dentistry are immense. With the incorporation of AI to our day-to-day clinical practice, there are exceptional improvements in precision of our treatments. Hence, it is very important for all clinicians to have basic knowledge and training with these technologies. However, it needs a lot more research and financial support for the actual implementation of robots in our practice. In no ways, AI can replace humans, but their integration in our field leads to a successful and stress-free practice.

Financial support and sponsorship


Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

  References Top

Available from: http://www.robots.com/education. [Last accessed on 2019 Sep 17].  Back to cited text no. 1
Bas B, Ozgonenel O, Ozden B, Bekcioglu B, Bulut E, Kurt M. Use of artificial neural network in differentiation of subgroups of temporomandibular internal derangements: A preliminary study. J Oral Maxillofac Surg 2012;70:51-9.  Back to cited text no. 2
Al Haidan A, Abu-Hammad O, Dar-Odeh N. Predicting tooth surface loss using genetic algorithms-optimized artificial neural networks. Comput Math Methods Med 2014;2014. doi.106236.  Back to cited text no. 3
Williams JS, Matthewman A, Brown D. An orthodontic expert system. Fuzzy Sets Syst 1989;30:121-33.  Back to cited text no. 4
Saghiri MA, Asgar K, Boukani KK, Lotfi M, Aghili H, Delvarani A, et al. Anew approach for locating the minor apical foramen using an artificial neural network. Int Endod J 2012;45:257-65.  Back to cited text no. 5
West JD, Roane JB. Cleaning and shaping the root canal system. In: Cohen S, Burns RC, editors. Pathways of the Pulp. 7th ed. St. Louis, Missouri: The C.V. Mosby; 1997. p. 203-57.  Back to cited text no. 6
Dong J. Rule-Based Planning for Automated Endodontic Treatment from Dental Radiography, 3-D Computer Modeling, to Tool Selection and Path Control. Dissertation, Columbia University; 2003. p. 149-53.  Back to cited text no. 7
Freitas RA Jr. Nanodentistry. J Am Dent Assoc 2000;131:1559-65.  Back to cited text no. 8
Speich JE, Rosen J. Medical robotics. In: Encyclopedia of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering. Marcel Dekker Inc: New York; 2004. p. 983-93.  Back to cited text no. 9
DiGioia AM, Colgan BD, Koerbel N. Computer aided surgery. In: Satava RM, editor. Cybersurgery: Advanced Technologies for Surgical Practice. New York: John Wiley and Sons; 1998. p. 121-39.  Back to cited text no. 10
Barone, Sandro & Casinelli, Matteo & Frascaria, Massimo & Paoli, Alessandro & Razionale, Armando. Interactive design of dental implant placements through CAD-CAM technologies: from 3D imaging to additive manufacturing. International Journal for Interactive Design and Manufacturing (IJIDeM). 2014. 10. 10.1007/s12008-014-0229-0.  Back to cited text no. 11
Hoffmann J, Westendorff C, Gomez-Roman G, Reinert S. Accuracy of navigation-guided socket drilling before implant installation compared to the conventional free-hand method in a synthetic edentulous lower jaw model. Clin Oral Implants Res 2005;16:609-14.  Back to cited text no. 12
Edinger DH. Planning and implant positioning by a robot system in the dental practice. Digit Dent News 2012;6:32-8.  Back to cited text no. 13
Tal H, Schicho KA, Shohat M. Implant locating and placement based on a novel tactile imaging and registration concept: A technical note. Int J Oral Maxillofac Implants 2007;22:1007-11.  Back to cited text no. 14
Available from: http://www.geminoid.dk. [Last accessed on 2019 Sep 17].  Back to cited text no. 15
Available from: http://www.gizmodo.com/5862512/simroid-trains- future-humanslaves-in-robot-dental-hygiene. [Last accessed on 2019 Sep 17].  Back to cited text no. 16
Available from: http://www.diginfo.tv/v/11-0245-r-en.php. [Last accessed on 2019 Sep 17].  Back to cited text no. 17

This article has been cited by
1 Robotic Applications in Orthodontics: Changing the Face of Contemporary Clinical Care
Samar Adel,Abbas Zaher,Nadia El Harouni,Adith Venugopal,Pratik Premjani,Nikhilesh Vaid,Ammar A. Siddiqui
BioMed Research International. 2021; 2021: 1
[Pubmed] | [DOI]


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Artificial Intel...
Endo Micro Robot
Dental Nanorobots
Surgical Robots
Sensor-Equipped ...
Robots for Train...
Will Artificial ...

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