Tools of the trade: The Wand STA

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anaesthetic system

by Dr Alex Davies, Admire Dentistry, Arana Hills, QLD

The Wand is a computer-controlled local anaesthetic (LA) device. It controls the speed and amount of LA delivered into your patient for a virtually painless experience. 

What’s good about it

I believe that patients feel pain from an LA injection because of the instant overstretch of the tissue due to the speed at which the anaesthetic is injected. As dentists, no matter how hard we try, we’re all guilty of this at times. The Wand takes human error out of the equation.

The Wand has three settings. I start with the slowest that’s like a drip feed of LA. After a few seconds I tap the pedal to speed up to the normal setting. There’s also a turbo setting.

With patients who are quite infected or have difficulty going numb, intraligamentary injection with STA is perfect. I use the 12.7mm 30-gauge needle with four per cent articaine 1:100000 solution. The only time this fails is when the patient is so infected antibiotics are required.

Using the Wand significantly reduces the anxiety of children and patients with a fear of needles. It looks nothing like a syringe. The handpiece itself is small, elegant and streamlined. The pen design allows me to hold the tip comfortably and steady while ensuring the accuracy of placement. With a subtle movement, the needle tip slides into the mucosa and the injection starts with a tap of the foot pedal. The lack of movement at the injection site has a huge role in ensuring a painless injection.

What’s not so good

When performing STA without additional LA, it can be tender around the injection site for a day or two afterwards. It’s also an expensive piece of equipment to purchase.

Where did you get it

Henry Schein

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