Great skepticism is appropriate when applying the recently fashionable three-dimensional skull radiographs with the cone beam tomography (CBT). The data obtained with a CBT has little or no contribution to the planning of routine treatments for patients so this elaborate technique has little benefit, but a high load of x-rays.
A CBT causes two- fourfold the radiation load emitted on the body than that of a standard panoramic x-ray. Therefore, for legal reasons, the administration of multiple CBT’s without due cause is regarded as criminal assault. Unfortunately, habit is hard to break and routine CBTs have been administered during recent years from the United States to Germany. Again, collecting diagnostic data is only useful if it has beneficial results for the therapy.