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Dental Simulator: Bi-Manual VR-Based Simulation of Dental Surgery

Recent years have seen the proliferation of VR-based dental simulators using a wide variety of different VR configurations. Differences in technologies and setups used result in important differences in degree of realism. These include 3D stereoscopic rendering and visual alignment of the user's hands with the virtual tools. While each new dental simulator typically is associated with some form of evaluation study, only few comparative studies have been carried out to determine the benefits of various simulation aspects. We developed a bimanual VR simulator using an HMD and two haptic devices that provides an immersive environment with both 3D stereoscopic rendering and hand-tool alignment. The effect of stereoscopic 3D is surprising and demands further research in settings with small target objects.

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The bimanual haptic device setup, which will be register in the VR using a reference VR controller pose.

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The physical device setup while the simulator is in use.

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A dental student of Thammasat University is using our simulator (as part of a user study).

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40 dental students were trained using our VR dental simulator, who reduced their errors based on evaluation by two independent experts dentists.

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The in-game view of the simulator which is rendered in stereoscopic 3D inside a VR HMD. The mirror is controlled by the left haptic device, the drill hand-pience by the right haptic device.

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Our tooth #36 model mesh, which we created by hand.

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We modeled 3 layers, enamel, dentin and pulp, also by hand.

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Top-view of an acceptable drilling outcome (flat shading rendering).

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An overdrilled drilling outcome.

Publications

Videos

Dental Simulator User Study (Root Canal Access Opening)

A dental student of Thammasat University is using our simulator (as part of a user study).
40 dental students were trained using our VR dental simulator, who reduced their errors
based on evaluation by two independent experts dentists.

Dental Milling Prototype (Caries Removal)

Performing dental caries removal, visualized in Unreal Engine.