Int J Esthet Dent 2 (2007), No. 4 21. Nov. 2007
The aim of this paper is to present a system for taking standardized photographs at different phases of treatment and making objective measurements based on these photographs, thus providing an objective comparison of various stages of therapy. This system situates a digital camera in a fixed relationship to stone casts of preselected clinical situations. After the photographs are imported to computer software, lines and points can be traced and then independently transferred from one picture to another. The technique makes it possible to compare the outcome of a certain procedure with a linear error <0.1 mm. The system can be used to analyze, compare, and measure vertical changes of the soft tissue margins, thus allowing for an objective, reproducible evaluation. The ability to measure results is important not only for clinicians who are committed to increasing their knowledge and improving their clinical procedures, but also for researchers who aim to compare a situation before, during, and after treatment to determine the efficacy of different techniques.