AI helps dentists catch more cavities, gum disease

science and technology

More than 47% of Americans, or nearly 65 million people, suffer from gum disease (periodontitis), including former Major League Baseball player Alex Rodriguez, who recently announced he has the disease There is this disease.

As artificial intelligence continues to expand into dental and medical uses, dentists are relying on the technology to quickly and accurately detect and prevent periodontitis, decay, bone loss and other gum health issues.

Now, Boston medical technology company VideaHealth says it has created a dental artificial intelligence platform that can be used by 90% of dental offices in the United States.

The FDA-cleared system uses algorithms trained on hundreds of millions of data points to analyze patient X-rays, more than 50 times the number of X-rays most dentists see in a lifetime, to provide treatment recommendations for patients.

“VideaAI allows dentists to review X-ray cavities and radiographic bone level results and compare them with our artificial intelligence algorithms,” said Flory, founder and CEO of VideaHealth in Boston and an artificial intelligence researcher at Harvard Business School. Florian Hillen told Fox News Digital.

He also said that in traditional dental screening, where X-ray analysis is used for diagnosis and treatment planning, 50 percent of cavities are missed and 30 percent of cases lead to incorrect diagnoses.

Dentists now rely on artificial intelligence to detect and prevent gum health problems. vidi health

He said his company's system “identified 43% more cavities, reduced misdiagnoses by 50%, and reduced false positives by 15%.”

“Our analysis could enable more accurate diagnosis and better preventive care.”

Artificial intelligence is the 'great equalizer' for dentists and patients

Hillen said that in addition to enabling faster, more accurate discoveries, VideoAI gives dentists the data and confidence to better engage with their patients.

“It can also help dentists achieve a more streamlined workflow in the office, thereby reducing human error and errors,” he added.

The artificial intelligence system “analyzes X-ray images of patients” and was approved by the FDA. Getty Images/iStockphoto

For patients, artificial intelligence tools can help improve their dental health by identifying cavities, abscesses, lesions and oral disease before they become larger problems.

“With proper dental care, the risk of medical complications from diabetes, heart disease and other conditions can be significantly reduced,” said Shearon.

Artificial intelligence can also help increase patient trust by showing them the “complete picture,” Shearen said.

Artificial intelligence allows dentists to be more accurate and reduce error rates when diagnosing patients. vidi health

“Today, many dental relationships are asymmetrical,” he said. “Patients don't know if they need an X-ray or a treatment plan – sometimes they want treatments they don't need.”

Hillen noted that historically, patients haven't always accepted the dentist's advice — “most of the time, they don't,” he said.

As a result, dental problems continue to worsen until serious problems occur.

50% of cavities are missed and 30% of cavities are misdiagnosed.

“You don't walk around with a finger infection—you treat it immediately and resolve the problem,” he said.

“So why do so many adults suffer from oral infections? Do they know they are at increased risk of diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and dementia?

Hillen said he sees artificial intelligence as the “great equalizer” because it can provide unbiased, data-driven analysis that dentists and patients can review and discuss together.

“With artificial intelligence, research results are easier to explain to patients, and patients trust their dentists more – meaning patients are more likely to continue necessary treatment rather than postpone care,” he said.

Video artificial intelligence in action

42 North Dental was one of the first clinics to introduce VideoAI tools. vidi health

One of the earliest adopters of VideAI's tools is 42 North Dental, a dental services organization in Boston.

“We believe strongly in technology and helping our physicians provide the best care possible,” the company's chief clinical officer, Michael A. Scialabba, DDS, Boston, told Fox News Digital.

“Artificial intelligence is critical for practitioners because it is unbiased and it provides us with opportunities to identify lesions that we might miss without it.”

When 42 North Dental began reviewing dental AI options, dentists first examined more than 100 images with their naked eyes.

This technology allows dentists to remain impartial and identify problems they might not have noticed on their own. vidi health

Scialabba said that when they used VideoAI to look at the same images again, they found cavities had increased by nearly 20 percent.

The clinic's treatment acceptance rate also increased by 20%.

“A common misconception is that dentists overdiagnose, but that's not accurate,” Schalaba said.

The clinic's treatment acceptance rate also increased by 20%.

Instead, he said, dentists “are conservative and under-diagnosis is the bigger problem. VideoAI can help us spot problems before they are visible to the naked eye, so we can make recommendations and avoid bigger problems.”

Scialabba said the implementation of artificial intelligence will help 42 North Dental prevent errors, reduce missed diagnoses, and improve oral health by detecting cavities and early bone loss, a sign of gum disease.

“This will help improve overall health and reduce the occurrence of chronic diseases,” he said. “Artificial intelligence in dentistry can increasingly help detect and prevent problems from diabetes to cardiovascular disease and dementia praecox.”

He added, “This is not an ideal – this is a fact.”

Patients at the clinic also appreciate having a clearer, more intuitive window into their dental health, Scialabba said.

“Patients now have an unbiased, data-backed understanding of their X-rays and diagnoses,” he said. “Artificial intelligence removes emotion and bias from dentists and patients and provides a straightforward way to discuss treatment plans using only facts.”

“This approach puts more control in the hands of patients so they can make the most informed, meaningful decisions for their oral care,” he added.

More than a year after implementing VideaAI, 42 North Dental is rolling out the technology to all of its locations.

Cannot replace “human experience”

Experts say that while dental artificial intelligence has been shown to improve patient outcomes and practice efficiency, it is not meant to replace trained professionals.

“Dentists and hygienists will always be a critical part of the diagnosis of disease because of their years of experience, patient history and background in in-person examinations,” Scialaba told Fox News Digital.

“Artificial intelligence in dentistry could help detect and prevent problems from diabetes to cardiovascular disease and dementia praecox.”

“Ultimately, it's a combination of artificial intelligence and human experience – a tool for dentists to use,” he added.

In addition to analyzing X-rays, clinicians are collaborators, advisors, educators and partners with their patients, and artificial intelligence can help them provide the best care, Scialabba said.

“The clinical experience and insights dental professionals bring cannot be underestimated, but artificial intelligence provides objective, consistent observations for them to consider when making decisions and recommendations,” he added.

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