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Latin American temperament meets Swiss precision

Riviera Maya, Mexico, 16-19. May – The Swiss are said to be devoted to precision, reliability and meticulous attention to details. In contrast, the current summit meeting of Latin America's "Líderes de Opinión" organised by Swiss dental specialist COLTENE proved to be a rather passionate event: at the meeting of no less than 380 professors from 25 different countries, the delegates were astounded, cheered and some even wept tears with emotion. There was a lot to be learned from the top level speakers during the four days of the congress. For nearly 20 years now, a gigantic network of dental experts from practice and research has developed on the other side of the earth, and our own universities and dentists can certainly benefit from their commitment and excellent interdisciplinary networking.

Networking par excellence

The picturesque coastal region of the Riviera Maya turned into a hub for the Latin American dental world for a whole four days. COLTENE delegates from Mexico, Guatemala, Costa Rica and Colombia to Argentina flocked to southeast Mexico to hear about the latest insights from the international dental elite. Such a comprehensive exchange of experience in the field of restorative dentistry and orthodontics is unrivalled worldwide: 110 universities and dentistry schools sent interested delegates.

The participating professors and lecturers conveyed their newly acquired knowledge to the most remote corners of the globe within a short space of time via the social media channels. Meanwhile the experts were busy discussing current study results and innovations in the field of materials research on the Internet. This way they help each other across borders with know-how and benefit from the wealth of personal experience of their colleagues.

Years ago, COLTENE initiated its unique COLTENE School E-Forum (as part of COLTENE School Program): sometimes up to six or seven universities use the interactive platform to present themselves in a joint webinar. "The transfer of knowledge works perfectly for us", says a pleased Nicolas Zottola, Director Latin America and Caribbean at COLTENE. "We are very proud that our professional cooperation has meanwhile set an example for similar ambitious programmes in Europe and the USA", expresses Lucas Beric, Director Latin America at COLTENE. This is the reason why lecturers from Peking or Seoul are taking part for the first time at the renowned KOL meeting to be inspired by their Latin American "neighbours".

COLTENE School E-Forum in images:
COLTENE.Latinoamerica YouTube Channel: https://goo.gl/zcNacm

Experience the pioneers of aesthetic filling therapy firsthand

The crème de la crème of the European composite elite flew in for the first two days of the congress for the presentation of developments in the field of high performance composites. The promising title of Prof. Dr. Ivo Krejci's opening presentation was most fitting "Everything you ever wanted to know about adhesion, but were afraid to ask". The head of the Clinic for Cariology and Endodontics as well as President of the Ecole de Mèdecine Dentaire at the University of Geneva gave a very vivid presentation on the basic principles of adhesive mounting and as well as valuable tips on how to create a reliable adhesive bond between composite restorations, mounting material and tooth substance. According to Professor Krejci, the key to success lies in using perfectly matched dental materials to create a resilient mechanical and chemical bond.

He was followed by his Italian colleague, Dr. Walter Devoto, a sought-after lecturer at the universities of Siena, Marsella and Barcelona, as well as being co-founder of the internationally renowned "Style Italiano", group of experts, who illustrated the practical advantages of permanent composite restorations. With 160 participants, the four hands-on courses of the well-versed composite user were all booked solid to the last place. During the courses, dentists were able to convince themselves of the excellent properties of the latest composite generation from COLTENE, such as the smooth consistency and the special polishing properties. Due to the intelligent composition with special fillers, the BRILLIANT EverGlow sub-micron universal composite offers exceptional gloss retention which really comes into its own during clinical routine.

Implantology specialist Dr. Nicolás Gutiérrez Robledo from the University Santiago de Compostela in Spain, a certified Cerec speaker, presented insights into the future of composite technology. He encouraged the audience to expand the use of composite as a versatile material in the chairside fabrication of final inlays, onlays, fully anatomical crowns and veneers. He also mentioned that the Japanese regulatory authorities PMDA (Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices Agency) who are regarded as very strict, have for the first time approved CAD/CAM composite blocs for fabricating crowns in the premolar region. The novel BRILLIANT Crios Reinforced Composite blocs allow the fast fabrication of permanent restorations with the CAD/CAM method without the need for a separate firing process. With a modulus of elasticity similar to dentine, the high performance material is even superior to ceramic in parts.

The first part of the congress culminated in the presentation by Resto legend Dr. Roberto Spreafico, Italy. His inspiring presentation on composite restorations captivated the audience right from the beginning. After the final case presentation of a complete restoration of 28 teeth in a female young, impoverished bulimic patient using composite and the non-prep process, the audience was quite literally unable to stay seated. The self-financed and highly impressive finishing resulted in tears of emotion from many a colleague. At the end of the presentation, the grand-seigneur received a standing ovation from the entire audience. Afterwards there was a tremendous queue of enthusiastic delegates trying to gain personal contact and take a "selfie" with Dr. Spreafico.

Endodontics - no need to be afraid of sharp bends

Ample time was also devoted to the pinnacle of tooth preservation during the symposium. German-born endodontics specialist Dr. Hanjo Hecker, lecturer at the Clinic for Periodontology, Endodontics and Cariology, University Basle, Switzerland, and owner of a private practice, held an entertaining presentation with integrated hands-on training on the topic of "Clinical challenges in the cleaning, preparation and obturation of root canals" and demonstrated how state-of-the-art bioactive filling materials significantly facilitate the work of dentists. Innovative 3-in-1 obturation materials combine flowable gutta-percha with appropriate sealants and bioceramics at room temperature. Upon contact with body fluids, the material provides natural repair constituents such as calcium and silicates. The initiated biochemical processes not only support the regeneration of bone and dentine tissue, but also significantly improve adhesion at the same time.

And last but not least, Prof. Dr. Eugenio Pedullà from the University of Catania, Italy, took a look at the latest trends in endodontics together with the congress delegates. In the process, he alleviated the fears caused by unusual canal anatomies. Modular conceived NiTi systems, such as the HyFlex EDM, give both endodontic beginners and experts confidence, regardless of J-shaped, C-shaped or S-shaped canals. The abbreviation EDM stands for the "Electrical Discharge Machining“ manufacturing process. Here, spark erosion creates a unique hardened surface which improves cutting performance and makes the files particularly break-resistant - even in the case of extremely curved root canals. The audience was so spell-bound by Dr. Pedulla's three-dimensional videos of root canals and new variants in the use of instruments that hardly anyone noticed the overrun in time. Various case studies gave an impressive illustration of the flexibility of the latest nickel-titanium instruments and effectively alleviated reservations. As a result of rapid technological development in state-of-the-art endodontics, clinicians can today make use of a multitude of smart aids and reliable high-tech instruments. The charming Sicilian certainly convinced his Latin American colleagues in next to no time.
5th COLTENE Latin-America Key Opinion Leaders Meeting in images:

Closure video Operative Dentistry and Prosthodontics Section: https://goo.gl/CX3WBM
Closure video Endodontics Section: https://goo.gl/ars7ae

Inspiration out of the box

Latin America is attractive for COLTENE in many ways. At the last IDS the significance of this continuously growing market had already become evident. Of the international guests, the majority came from the regions Latin America and Asia. It pays dentists to have a good look south, not only when it comes to holiday destinations. Even meticulous Swiss dentists can get carried away by the passion for attractive restorations and Latin American generosity in sharing current research results. The expansion of this successful congress model to other regions is well underway at COLTENE: a European Key Opinion Leader Meeting is already planned for June 2017 to which the innovation leader will invite the European scientific elite to one of the Swiss cantons.


Coltène is a global leader in the development, manufacture and sale of consumables and small equipment for dental treatment applications. The foundation for Coltène AG was laid in 1963 in the fields of production and trade with products for dentistry and construction chemistry. Numerous mergers and reorganisation resulted in a focus on the dental market in the 70s, in particular in the field of impression materials and dental fillings. The takeover of the US company Whaledent, a specialist for parapulpal pins and posts, led to the formation of the Coltène/Whaledent company group in 1990 with intensified international alignment. Further company acquisitions supplemented the product range with a bias towards orthodontics, rotating instruments and a large number or dental consumables.

Today, COLTENE operates production facilities in Switzerland, Germany, Hungary, Brazil and the USA, as well as a worldwide sales network with its own representatives and distribution partners. Dentists and dental technicians worldwide rely on COLTENE products, both for conventional, as well as implant-based treatment and dental reconstruction. More information on COLTENE and our products is available on our website www.coltene.com.