In case you missed it: Dentalcompare Dec. 26 (News from the Future)
Milt Desmond, a San Diego dentist, prepped a tooth on a patient in Fargo, North Dakota. By means of tele-dentistry techniques, Dr. Desmond used 3D images of the patient, including bones, teeth and soft tissue integrated into a virtual patient simulation transmitted to his office in California over the Internet. He transmitted his image back to the clinic in Fargo to talk with the patient and inevitably to ask him to open his mouth.
With Google Glass to guide him Dr. Desmond slipped his hands into a pair of cyber gloves in San Diego to guide the handpiece connected to a surgical robot at the other end in Fargo. He used real time 3D images of the tooth prep including patient vitals off to the side and a shadow image of the pulp below the surface to help guide the prep.
The image of the prepped tooth was than transmitted to a master technician in Bern, Switzerland who designed the restoration. The design was whisked back to a 3D printer in Fargo to create the restoration.
Dentists and lab techs in Fargo could not be reached for comment.
3D images, virtual patient integration, telepresence robots, Google Glass, surgical robots, augmented reality, digital impressions and 3D printers all exist right now. It could happen.