Introducing new products

Oct. 1, 2002
At the Levin Group, we believe dentists can benefit from incorporating new products into their practices. I will explore four ways to make this introduction easier for you.

Roger P. Levin, DDS, MBA

At the Levin Group, we believe dentists can benefit from incorporating new products into their practices. I will explore four ways to make this introduction easier for you.

A painless test for oral cancer

For this column, I have selected an innovative and important diagnostic product that was introduced four years ago — OralCDx. This product allows easy and painless testing for oral cancer. This is a potentially deadly disease that affects more than 30,000 Americans and claims more than 9,000 lives each year.

OralCDx is a diagnostic system that uses a painless brush biopsy and takes only minutes to complete. Significantly, this product allows for early detection of oral cancers that previously went undiagnosed until the advanced stages.

Detecting oral cancer early greatly increases the chances for a complete cure. When detected in its later stages, it is a devastating disease. Late-stage treatment usually involves major and frequently disfiguring facial surgery. Only half of such patients survive more than five years. Therefore, it is important to use OralCDx to detect dangerous oral lesions at an early and curable stage. One of the most important things we can do as dentists is to catch this killer early. In fact, dentistry has always been exemplary in adding new tests and products that benefit patients while enhancing the scope of the practice.

Introducing OralCDx

•Start with a goal. Determine how many OralCDx brush biopsies should be performed weekly. Recent data revealed that 10 percent of dentists screened at the American Dental Association's annual conference in 1999 were found to have oral lesions that required further diagnosis. If 10 percent of dentists have lesions, the same percentage is possible for our patients.

Oral cancer occurs more often in those who use tobacco in any form or those who consume large amounts of alcohol. However this disease can and does develop in people of all backgrounds and lifestyles. Anyone may need diagnosis!

•How to tell your patients. It's best if you don't talk to your patients as if they have cancer or that you expect them to have cancer.

Try this script upon discovering sores or lesions: "Mrs. Jones, we see something here that we would like to evaluate. We have a very quick and painless test for it. The test will likely be negative but it's better to be sure."

Let your patients know that OralCDx is a routine procedure.

•Implement reimbursement procedures. Teach your insurance coordinator how to handle new procedure reimbursement. If you call OralCDx at (800) 560-4467, their customer service agents can help you handle billing efficiently.

•Make decisions that benefit your practice. OralCDx is one example of a product that magnificently benefits both dentists and their patients. This product can save lives.

As dentistry continues to evolve, so will medicine — probably at a higher rate. If dentists fail to screen and identify lesions and detect early signs of cancer, I certainly believe that the medical community will begin to wear the mask of our profession. Not long ago, far more people were killed by cancer than today. It was early detection by committed health care professionals that made the difference. OralCDx gives you the opportunity to make a difference!

For an OralCDx information kit, call (800) 560-4467 or visit

Roger P. Levin, DDS, MBA, president and CEO of The Levin Group and the Levin Advanced Learning Institute, provides worldwide leadership in dental management for general dentists and specialists. Contact The Levin Group at (410) 654-1234.

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