INDUSTRYinterview DSP: Please tell us how you got started in sleep, and when was it you realized the importance of dental involvement?
Richard Bonato, PhD, RPSGT
RAEBON has been a leader in sleep therapy for 20 years with Co-Founder Dr. Richard Bonato as the public face of the company. Many dentists may not be aware of the giant contributions BRAEBON has made to their ability to successfully manage sleepy patients. DSP sat down with Dr. Bonato recently for this enlightening interview.
22 DSP | Spring 2017
RB: I began studying sleep during my undergrad days in 1986 after I picked up an issue of National Geographic which had a cover article entitled “Why We Sleep?” Back then sleep disorders medicine was in its infancy and only a fraction of the clinical sleep laboratories found today existed worldwide. I found the article fascinating, figured there had to be a career in it somewhere because everyone sleeps and I decided to pursue this as an area of specialty. During my Master’s and Ph.D. studies I became the 604th person in the world to become registered as a polysomnographic technologist (RPSGT) while I worked in a hospital sleep laboratory. Afterward I completed my Ph.D. and decided to enter the industry where I worked for a large multinational corporation for two years. In 1998, myself and Don Bradley founded BRAEBON Medical Corporation in his basement with the vision of getting into home sleep diagnostics which we did in 2003 when we launched our MediPalm full PSG system capable of either home or laboratory use. In 2004, I had the vision of getting into dental sleep medicine because I saw oral appliance therapy as a future growth market. BRAEBON began working on a simpler home recording device called MediByte – Medi for medical and Byte as a play on bite registration – which was the first tool intended for use in both medical and dental settings. BRAEBON attended its first AADSM conference in 2005 and has been steadily growing in dental sleep medicine ever since.
DSP: We know that HST is becoming the most common method of identifying sleep disorders – can you tell us more about BRAEBON’s involvement with providing several solutions for testing? Do you see testing in dental offices as a growing part of the specialty? RB: The founders of BRAEBON collaborated on the original Sandman PSG system in 1991-92. We used this vast experience in PSG product development in the development of our home sleep apnea recorders. As we evolved we developed powerful yet easy