Before working in the dental lab, I had never given much thought to a palatal obturator. 
Before working with Dr. Amit Paryag, I had never seen a restorative dentist with such fire and keenness toward patient and product perfection - "patient centered care", as he refers to it. 
When the two rolled in to one for us at Drake, something momentous was born. 

In 1560 Lusitanus was probably the first to describe what is today known as palatal obturator used for permanent luetic fistula of the palate (). In 1564 Ambroise Parè called his small obturators “couvercles”, and in 1575 changed the name to “obturateur" which is derived from the Latin “obturo” meaning to stop upIn 1634, Johson translated Parè’s “surgery”, published for king Henri the third. The text described an appliance to restore the palatal defect caused by venereal diseases and gunshot wounds. In order to create his obturators, Parè filled the cavities with a gold or silver plate a little bigger than the cavity. Since surgical correction of the palate defect offered difficulties for centuries, in fact the surgeons of the middle aged avoided surgery of the palate, prosthetic aids of the renaissance deserved praise and were used for about 200 years.  (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4402688/)

No doubt, today's Oral Facial Rehabilitation methods have improved significantly. But have periodontal diseases, cancers, and congenital defects climbed as well? If so, I can only imagine where obturateur and rehabilitation dentistry could be 10 years from know. We already have the ability for extremely accurate design fits due to our ability to DIGITALLY design and mill frameworks right here in our lab.  


Duracetal resin-based appliances - Collaborated by Drake Precision Dental Lab and Dr. Amit Paryag, University of the West Indies, School of Dentistry, St. Augustine, Trinidad & Tobago.

 Rehabilitation of resection defects caused by management of ameloblastoma

Those who work in dentistry every day may become desensitized to it every now and then. And those unfamiliar with it's capabilities may be unaware of the full wingspan.  But when images like these are your success stories, I think we can all take a second to agree that dentistry is listlessly incredible for all that it can do. 
And from the obturators in 1560 'till now, I can't wait to see what the future of dental medicine holds!


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