Marginal discrepancy of noble metal-ceramic fixed dental prosthesis frameworks fabricated by conventional and digital technologies

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Abstract

Statement of problem.

Studies evaluating the marginal adaptation of available computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing (CAD-CAM) noble alloys for metal-ceramic prostheses are lacking.

Purpose.

The purpose of this in vitro study was to evaluate the vertical marginal adaptation of cast, milled, and direct metal laser sintered (DMLS) noble metal-ceramic 3-unit fixed partial denture (FDP) frameworks before and after fit adjustments.

Material and methods.

Two typodont teeth were prepared for metal-ceramic FDP abutments. An acrylic resin pattern of the prepared teeth was fabricated and cast in nickel-chromium (Ni-Cr) alloy. Each specimen group (cast, milled, DMLS) was composed of 12 casts made from 12 impressions (n=12). A single design for the FDP substructure was created on a laboratory scanner and used for designing the specimens in the 3 groups. Each specimen was fitted to its corresponding cast by using up to 5 adjustment cycles, and marginal discrepancies were measured on the master Ni-Cr model before and after laboratory fit adjustments.

Results.

The milled and DMLS groups had smaller marginal discrepancy measurements than those of the cast group (P<.001). Significant differences were found in the number of adjustments among the groups, with the milled group requiring the minimum number of adjustments, followed by the DMLS and cast groups (F=30.643, P<.001).

Conclusions.

Metal–ceramic noble alloy frameworks fabricated by using a CAD-CAM workflow had significantly smaller marginal discrepancies compared with those with a traditional cast workflow, with the milled group demonstrating the best marginal fit among the 3 test groups. Manual refining significantly enhanced the marginal fit of all groups. All 3 groups demonstrated marginal discrepancies within the range of clinical acceptability.

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