Industry Insider

Chester H. Wang is the director of Dolphin Imaging & Management Solutions.

Orthodontic Products: What new modules is Dolphin offering this fall?

Chester H. Wang: We’re shipping our new Legend Series modules this fall. Dolphin Management users are already showing enthusiasm for the Zuelke Financial Expert™. For Dolphin Imaging, we have the new Arnett/Gunson FAB Analyses. Both these modules join the already popular McLaughlin Dental VTO and Roncone Modules software suite. Dolphin users have been overwhelmingly eager to incorporate the philosophies of all these legends into their practices.

We’ll be introducing these modules with the release of Dolphin Management 4.0 and Dolphin Imaging 11, the latest versions of our software packages that also contain plenty of new features that assist the orthodontic office. For example, 3D offers Volume Superimposition and a “photo wrap” function that allows you to instantly wrap a 2D photo accurately around a 3D volume scan. And with Dolphin Management, we offer an enhanced Tooth Chart and the new Dolphin Interactive Report Tool.

Our Aquarium content library is expanding to include not only more orthodontic media, but also relevant content for oral surgeons.

OP: How specifically will each one help an orthodontic practice?

Wang: Paul Zuelke and his team at Zuelke & Associates have been consulting in the orthodontic community for nearly 30 years. The Zuelke Financial Expert helps a practice implement Paul’s proven methods to efficiently manage the business of being an orthodontist. Programs are designed to easily and accurately track collection activity, control delinquency, and monitor patient and insurance accounts. Statistical reports covering all aspects of practice performance can be quickly generated and are easy to read.

The Arnett/Gunson FAB Analyses enhances the clinician’s ability to assess patients according to Arnett’s unique methodology of evaluating the face, airway, and bite. The module features both an orthodontic and a surgical analysis, which are full-featured VTO programs with wigglegrams and treatment-simulation capabilities. The practitioner is able to accurately plan each step of treatment and display the simulated result to the patient during the initial exam. This greatly impacts case presentation to both the patient and referring doctors.

OP: What, if anything, is Dolphin doing to celebrate its 20th anniversary?

Wang: We’ve been celebrating on a number of levels, and this special Dolphin-sponsored Orthodontic Products issue is one of them! Don’t miss our pictorial history (PDF) from this issue (will require resizing to 100% to view captions). Our annual Dolphin Meeting in March was the kickoff party for our anniversary year, and it enjoyed the largest turnout in our history. Other initiatives we’ve taken to shine a light on our contributions to the dental community include the launch of our Legend Series and special pricing across our entire line for the summer.

OP: How has the orthodontic business changed since you started in this business?

Wang: Certainly, technology has been the driving factor of change in orthodontics, and I’m not speaking solely of software applications such as what Dolphin offers. We’ve seen the invention of better appliances due to technical advances; automation in treatment using sophisticated software; and 3D imaging, which is made practical because of technology. Of course, Invisalign has had a huge impact on orthodontics, and its development happened regardless of technology.

The constantly evolving technology of mainstream culture has shaped a patient demographic that expects a certain standard from all service vendors, the orthodontist being no exception. Today’s patient expects to be able to research their options on the Internet, do a background check on the provider, and communicate online—including discussions about their doctors and scheduling appointments. Doctors in all specialties are having to keep up with those expectations or watch their patient base dwindle.

OP: Where do you see orthodontics going in the next 20 years?

Wang: The orthodontic community is headed toward cyberspace! While everyone has their eye on the green, paperless practice that awaits there, the Internet also delivers greater accessibility of information for patients and vendors. People want information instantly, and they want to be able to evaluate it at a glance. As patients become more savvy, they base their decisions on facts more than marketing.

Technology will also dictate the way the orthodontist diagnoses and plans treatment. While clinical research of safety concerns are still in progress, 3D is here to stay and is quickly becoming the norm in everyday practices. Practitioners are realizing that the enormous amount of accurate information delivered by a 3D scan allows them to enhance their patient treatment well beyond what they could achieve with traditional tools. It also helps them work more efficiently with referrals. And the software that processes all this data is becoming more sophisticated at an exponential rate. All this means better patient care and a greater rate of successful results.