Friday, January 05, 2007

CNN story on the waterlase MD laser drill

I believe in the future, a significant portion of dentistry will be done by laser. The advantages are numerous: less discomfort, better tissue response and none of the typical drill sounds. However, the cost is pretty prohibitive as the moment ($85 000-$100 000 for each machine multiplied by the number of operatories in a particular practice...ouch). Wider adoption of the technology is sure to happen when the price drops significantly (say about $25 000 per machine).

CNN had an article this morning on the topic and how incentives are being used to stimulate sales of these lasers. Here are some teaser quotes from the article:

Some dentists are resistant to change, while others just have bad memories about the older laser drills. Older models were less popular with dentists because they were difficult to use and therefore not as safe as the new laser-water drills.

"There is a number of dentists who have a dated concept of what laser dentistry is, and that gives Biolase a challenge of reaching these dentists, [to teach them] how far advanced Biolase really is," said Biolase chief executive Jeffrey Jones. Biolase is wooing dentists with the promise that its HydroPhotonics technology causes no pain and therefore requires no anesthetic.

Also, to drum up business for its $85,000 Waterlase drill, Biolase and its distributor, Sullivan-
Schein Dental, offered a holiday sales promotion that included a $5,000 discount plus a 50-inch plasma TV and a $5,000 Sullivan-Schein merchandise gift certificate.

How about improving the manufacturing process and reducing the price? :)

Take care,

Hans Skariah, B.Sc., DMD
Promenade Court Dental Health Group in Mississauga
2233 Hurontario St., Mississauga, ON, Canada
(1/2 km north of the QEW in the Dome Building)
(905) 273-7100