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REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2016  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 1-7

Rapid prototyping: A future in orthodontics


Department of Orthodontics, Al-Badar Rural Dental College and Hospital, Gulbarga, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Avinash Kumar
Department of Orthodontics, Al-Badar Rural Dental College and Hospital, Gulbarga, Karnataka
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/2321-3825.167856

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Rapid prototyping (RP) is the name given to the host of related techniques that are used to fabricate the physical models based on computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing. RP technology allows the building of a medical model layer by layer, reproducing almost every form of the external and internal anatomic structure. It has rapid speed, better design communication, and easy detection of flaws. Data for RP is obtained from the magnetic resonance image/computed tomography scan slice images and they are converted into digital image which in turn is transformed to standard triangulation language file and afterward layer by layer construction is done by different techniques such as stereolithography, fused deposit modeling, selective laser sintering and inkjet printing to form the physical model. The applications of this digital technology in orthodontics includes diagnosis and treatment planning, fabrication of orthodontic removable appliances, impression trays for indirect bonding, and surgical template for implant placement, prototype model is employed in various orthognathic surgeries, it has been used for the custom manufacture of lingual orthodontics appliances and also to produce a distractor during distraction osteogenesis. Its advantages include rapid fabrication, minimal time, easy handling, better visualization, reuse of design, and repeated verification, however, the clinical judgment still remains vital. This article reviews the use of RP in the field of orthodontics; it improves a valuable insight at the time of preoperative treatment planning and enhances the quality of treatment effect. There is a divergence in the applications of RP for an orthodontist, and the future looks more promising if we use it innovatively.


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