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Virginia Beach dentists use FDA-approved robot to help with implant surgeries

Dr. Geoffrey Schreiber with the Eastern Virginia OMS said this device acts like a GPS. It tells doctors where to drill, and when to stop.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Virginia Beach oral surgeons are using technology to create a faster and safer way to operate. In fact, they're using a first-of-its-kind dental robotic arm to get the job done.

Doctors at Eastern Virginia Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (OMS) bought the Robotic Dental System called Yomi from Neocis Inc.

“The first implant felt like a mini jackhammer when they were drilling in my mouth,” said patient Jeanne Capistran.

Capistran recently got a dental implant with the help of a robot.

“My last two implants it was like day and night, but I think the robotics, I just myself found it fascinating,” she said. 

Dr. Geoffrey Schreiber with the medical group said this device acts like a GPS, and doctors demonstrated by asking a patient to turn his head to the right. 

The robot tracked with the patient’s movement.  

Schreiber said the robot helps him and his team safely drill with precision, but that a staff member with a laptop is always in control of the device.

“This company is the one and only FDA-approved robotic dental implant system at this point,” he explained. “From arm coming on and off, it's usually around eight to ten minutes, so the surgery itself is very quick."

The robotic arm can direct the doctor when to move or stop. For example, when one dentist worked on a tooth, the robot knew where to stop drilling. 

That's because before the surgery begins, doctors get a scan of the patient’s mouth, which makes it easier to see where the drill needs to go.

“It makes the surgery so much quicker and less painless because we don’t have to lift a big tissue flap to move the gums so I can see where the bone is," Schreiber explained. "Now, I know where the bone is, because it’s already planned pre-operatively.”

Capistran told 13News Now her recent surgery didn’t cause a lot of pain.

“The following day I took Ibuprofen, and I was good to go, but I’ve been very pleased, and it's really kind of exciting to realize how robotics are advancing in oral surgery,” she said. 

The robot cost the office around $150,000, but there is no extra cost to patients for having the dental robot assist in the procedure. 

Eastern Virginia OMS said patients who have insurance that covers implant procedures can have that covered as well.

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