Surface properties of polyetheretherketone after different laboratory and chairside polishing protocols

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Statement of problem

Polyetheretherketone (PEEK) can be used as a framework material for fixed dental prostheses. However, information about laboratory and chairside polishing methods is still scarce.


The purpose of this in vitro study was to determine the effects of laboratory and chairside polishing methods on the surface roughness (SR) and surface free energy (SFE) of PEEK, an autopolymerizing poly(methyl methacrylate), and a veneering composite resin.

Material and methods

For each of the 3 materials, 80 specimens were prepared (N=240) and divided into 7 polishing groups and 1 control group (n=10). The 7 groups were split into 4 laboratory protocols: polishing paste (Abraso), a second polishing paste (Opal L), silicone polisher (Ceragum), and diamond grinder (Diagen-Turbo grinder). The other 3 groups were chairside protocols: rainbow technique (Super-Snap kit), polishing paste (Prisma gloss), and a polishing system (Enhance finishing). Machine polishing with SiC P4000 served as the control treatment. The protocols’ average SRs and SFEs were measured, and their surface topographies were evaluated with scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The logarithmically transformed data were analyzed using covariance analysis, 2-way and 1-way ANOVA, and partial correlation (α=.05).


The polishing protocol exerted the highest influence on SR and SFE values (P<.001; SR: partial eta squared ηP2=.970; SFE: ηP2=.450), followed by material group (P<.001, SR: ηP2=.319; SFE: ηP2=.429). The interaction effect of the binary combinations of the 2 independent parameters (polishing protocol and material group) was also significant (P<.001, SR: ηP2=.681; SFE: ηP2=.365).


Chairside methods presented lower SR values than laboratory methods, and specimens polished using the 2-body mode showed higher SR than did specimens polished using the 3-body mode.

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