This study was designed to compare the biomechanical performance of splinted and nonsplinted short implants, in the posterior mandible, using finite element analysis.Materials and Methods:
Three-dimensional models of short implants with 2 different diameters (4 × 6 mm or 5 × 6 mm) were scanned, and CATIA (R21) was used to simulate the model of an edentulous lower jaw. Experimental groups were designed as follows: (1) D4L6-splinted (three 4 × 6-mm splinted implants), (2) D4L6-nonsplinted, (3) D5L6-splinted, and (4) D5L6-nonsplinted. A 100 N load was applied, and stress and strain values in surrounding bone were analyzed in specific nodes using ANSYS software (16.1).Results:
The maximum stress values under axial load were found in D5L6-splinted model, and under oblique load, D5L6-nonsplinted model had the maximum stress values. Under axial load, D4L6-splinted model showed maximum strain values, but when oblique load was applied, D4L6-nonsplinted model had the maximum strain values.Conclusion:
Splinting adjacent short implants may provide less bone strain and stress, especially at the presence of lateral forces. Increasing the implant diameter may be effective in strain reduction, but does not seem to reduce the bone stress, regardless of the direction of the load applied.