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Flipper vs Acrylic Partial

Discussion in 'Misc' started by evanosu, Aug 2, 2011.

  1. evanosu

    evanosu Member

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    Ok I'm new in the dental lab business and I'm getting confused between a flipper & an acrylic partial. I figure 1-2 teeth is a flipper but if a doctor writes they are extracting 4 teeth and call that a flipper w/ no clasps, is it a flipper or is it really an acrylic partial? I want to know so I can educate my staff and ensure I'm billing correctly.

    Help, thanks!
  2. lcmlabforum

    lcmlabforum Member

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    I try to discourage such terminology . . .
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flipper_(1964_TV_series)
    although some patients understand it better because the DDS calls them
    that. My understanding is an acrylic partial made as interim (read 'temporary'
    or immediate replacement) would be referred to as a 'flipper' while an
    acrylic partial can be designed or even used as long term prosthesis
    in lieu of metal based RPD. You might want to call those 'treatment'
    or interim/provisional prosthesis officially.
    My verbose, 0.5 cents' worth.
    LCM
  3. Clear Precision Dental

    Clear Precision Dental Member

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    Acrylic partials were developed as provisional restorations. Technically these are "Mucosal-borne provisional prostheses." They are also used when the remaining teeth are likely to be removed in the near future and the partial needs to be easily added on to so that the partial denture can become a full one.

    "Acrylic partials" without clasps were often called "Stayplates." These are not technical, or prothodontic terms but rather convention or sloppy terms that stick in the verbage. I was always taught that "Flipper" was a porpoise and not a dental device, but docs and patients call them that out of common usage perhaps because they "flip around" in the mouth.

    Older patients called complete dentures and removable partial dentures, "full plates" and "partial plates" respectively. Some patients refer to a removable partial denture as a "removable bridge."

    This is also the case in "Fixed Prosthodontics." The actual term for a fixed (cemented, luted, "glued") restoration replacing missing teeth is a "Fixed Partial Denture." We all tend to refer to these as "Bridges" even though this is not the actual, "correct" term.

    These are all terms of various, and perhaps less-correct usage. People spend portions of their careers defining "Glossary of Prothdontic Terms," and arguing accuracy of semantics. Simply look up the history of the term "centric relation," and how many times it has been redefined over the years!!!

    Sorry for the rant and even more verbose explanation... just sayin'.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2011
  4. kcdt

    kcdt Well-Known Member

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    If you wish to convey these things with clarity, stick to the precise terms used in the Glossary of Prosthodontics. That said, your staff should also be aware of the existence of slang terms for some of these appliances, not to use them themselves, but to understand your clients who insist on using them.....
  5. evanosu

    evanosu Member

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    Follow-up question:

    With an acrylic partial (temporary) and a healing denture (temporary but made with just anterior teeth for a particular dr. I do business with) - how are your labs manufacturing these:

    Are you simply making these via cold cure techniques, pack or injection? Using different acrylic than you would for your final dentures?

    Thanks for the help!
  6. CoolHandLuke
    Goofy

    CoolHandLuke Well-Known Member

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    i've been working on a way to make 1-2 unit unilateral all-acrylic partials in the 3shape software (SANS EXTRA FEE DENTURE LICENSE) but i know this is a bit off topic, so i'll shut up and finish my work and show you when i get a working model.
  7. pingvin

    pingvin New Member

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    That depends on the case, if it is only one or two teeth then cold cure (Pro Base Cold), if more complicated case then hot cure (Pro Base Hot).
  8. dmonwaxa

    dmonwaxa Moderator

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    LOL

    I think though most labs view a flipper a replacement for 1 or 2 teeth. When is a flipper no longer a flipper. I had a dds called on a lab for a "flipper" and a price was quoted. Several days later the doc sent a case to the lab to have an acrylic partial replacing 8 teeth. The case was delivered and the lab then received a call from said dds saying " why am I being charged this much for a flipper, this is not what you quoted me" ,,,,,, Really doc? Really?

    This was a flipper alright,,,,,the doc that is,,, poor doc already flipped their flipping everloving mind.
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2011
  9. CoolHandLuke
    Goofy

    CoolHandLuke Well-Known Member

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    yeah we have that happen all the time. doc calls about adding a tooth to a denture, cost is x. doc sends case, its actually add 5 teeth. naturally the price is 5x, and the doc flips out.

    oddly still sends work of the same nature almost everyday.

    call for quote on turnaround for repair, quoted x days. sends case, turns out its repair, add tooth, change shade of the whole denture and reline all in x days. naturally he gets a call and flips out when its 5x days.

    docs are just plain not with it (in my neck of the woods) and this is no surprise.

    but given our puck costs and the estimated cost for a unilateral milled in pmma as opposed to cast or such, we've not only tabled the idea but 3 failed prototypes have been produced today alone.

    tomorrow looks brighter.
  10. kcdt

    kcdt Well-Known Member

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    That kind of forgetfulness seems awfully deliberate. You'd think someone that cheap would realize that an appliance that requires that much repair is an opportunity to sell a new one for a better profit than squeal at the cost of fixing it. Such a waste of time and effort on the clinic's part.
  11. CoolHandLuke
    Goofy

    CoolHandLuke Well-Known Member

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    my dentists are crazy. thats about as succinctly and politely as i can put it.

    i couldnt make this stuff up if i tried.

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