Thursday, June 4, 2015
Lately, as the profession has seen several open source CAD/CAM milling systems hitting the market, several people have made a point to ask me "when is 3D printing of dental restorations going to be available".
My answer has always been basically "sooner as opposed to later". However, gauging something like that is always a bit dicey when you are dealing with materials science, the FDA, and the constantly changing field of technology.
However, we may be closer than any of us imagined. A story on Yahoo Finance is stating that 3D printing in dentistry could be a $3.1 Billion market in 5 years.
Now, to be clear they are not just looking at restorations, dentures, metal frameworks, etc. They are also discussing surgical guides, appliances, and the like.
Still, that is a huge number when you take into consideration that very little is being done by printing today. Most of the CAD/CAM market currently is done by subtractive methods, meaning taking a large piece of material & then machining it down to create the proper shape.
It's an interesting read so if you'd like the whole article, here it is.
Posted by John Flucke at 06:00