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Episode 3: Managing Patient Expectations

Full-Arch Restoration - Mission Possible (Mini-Series)

Managing Patient Expectations" during the full arch treatment process is essential to creating a high level of patient satisfaction. In this episode, we will explore strategies for doctors and staff to help patients understand their full arch treatment steps and timeline.

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Episode 3 - Managing Patient Expectations

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Watch the Hybridge Podcast Video: Episode 3 - Managing Patient Expectations


Randal:: Thank you for joining me today Dr. LaMar

Dr. LaMar: Great to be here Randal.

Randal:: Dr. LaMar, how important is it for the patient to have an accurate roadmap and schedule of their full Arch case in advance.

Dr. Lamar: You know, what you're referring to is what we call a treatment sequence, and you know in any dentist's career it's one of those things that isn't done early in the career, and then little by little you'll realize that every procedure that you do has a series of appointments and it's nice to have that defined for patient.

When you do full arch a lot of doctors have a concept as to how to do a full Arch case but there's there's no definition to a true series of steps, which is the sequence of appointments. How much time in an appointment for the patient so for example, if an appointment is an hour and a half, it's nice to know that they get scheduled for an hour and a half and how much time between every appointment. So if there's a requirement for a three-week wait between an appointment three and appointment four, it's nice to know that there's a roadmap in advance of the case. With the Hybridge protocol, there are 18 different treatments scenarios. For example, one scenario would be a patient who is having treatment on the mandible, so they have teeth, they're a dentate start and they're going to a lower Highbridge. That's a specific series of steps unique to that scenario. Another scenario might be a maxillary Highbridge case where the patient presents with a complete denture and so they edentulous already, and now they're going to go from edentulous to a maxillary Hybridge, and that's a whole other set of steps.

So, all of our patients who are starting treatment one of the first things that we do is give them a document and it's the treatment sequence that pertains to the scenario, the treatment scenario that there are about to start off on.

Randal:: So it's very case specific?

Dr. Lamar: It's exactly, their case, and it is modifiable, but most of these cases are pretty much the same procedure over and over, and one of the things that either I'll do or my treatment coordinator will do is sit down with the patient in advance and explain to them how to use that document. Every appointment has a name, for example, the first appointment is called Initial Records. Which of course is recording the patient pretreatment, initial Impressions, bite registration, facebow, we pick shade and mold, we take photographs. We're basically memorializing the patient before they start. So Initial Records might be an hour and a half, it might be with a certain provider in the office, and so not only is the patient aware of how that document works but that same document goes into the patient's chart and is used by all of the staff. All doctors know the feeling of, a patient's on the phone and the staff member comes to you and says hey doctor LaMar, what's next appointment for Mrs. Smith? So not only do you have to remember who Mrs. Smith is, but you have to remember what was the last thing we did, when did we do it, and what's the next step? So these treatment sequences are not only for the office but it's also nice for the patient to know exactly what comes next and most doctors can relate to having a patient frustrated. These treatments could be an 8-week process or it could be a five-month process. No matter how long it is, during the treatment when the patients in the middle, if the patient doesn't understand where they are in the process and where the end is relative to where they are, they're typically frustrated. So treatment sequences are also very helpful in establishing a really good patient experience in that treatment.

Randal:: Well is sounds like patients in your practice certainly will have a good roadmap to follow. Thank you for joining me today.

Dr. Lamar: Thanks Randal

Randal:: Thank you for joining us on Full Arch Restoration, Mission Possible.

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