CAD/CAM dentures may outperform off-the-shelf ones

Denture Broken

When it comes to complete dentures, CAD/CAM milled acrylic resin teeth may outperform prefabricated artificial teeth, according to a new study published on June 10 in the Journal of Prosthodontics.

CAD/CAM milled acrylic resin denture teeth have better wear resistance and surface hardness, the authors wrote.

"In terms of wear resistance and surface hardness, CAD-CAM milled acrylic resin teeth were superior to prefabricated acrylic resin artificial teeth once the complete denture functions," wrote the authors, led by Sarah Abdelaal Ali, MSc, of the Mansoura University External Residence of Prosthodontics in Egypt.

For the study, 10 completely edentulous patients were randomly selected and provided with two sets of complete dentures: one made with prefabricated teeth and the other with CAD/CAM milled teeth. Dentures were scanned at insertion, three months, and six months.

Using 3D surface superimposition techniques, vertical (2D wear) and volumetric (3D wear) material loss were measured. The hardness of the teeth was assessed using a digital Vickers microhardness tester at insertion and after six months, the authors wrote.

Significant differences in 2D and 3D wear between complete dentures with prefabricated teeth and those with milled teeth at each time interval were revealed. Regarding surface hardness, milled teeth were significantly harder than prefabricated teeth both before and six months after denture use (p = 0.001). Hardness decreased in both groups after six months, with initial means of 39.37 ± 10.67 and 70.90 ± 14.31 significantly higher than means at six months of 30.24 ± 3.79 and 57.47 ± 10.38 and p-values of 0.016 and 0.039, respectively, according to the results.

Compared to the CAD/CAM milled teeth, the volumetric and vertical wear of prefabricated teeth were exaggerated. Over the first three months of denture function, the wear values increased and then started dropping, they wrote.

The study, however, had limitations. Future research should include a larger sample size and longer evaluation periods, the authors added.

"Prefabricated acrylic denture teeth cannot compete with CAD/CAM milled acrylic denture teeth regarding wear resistance and surface hardness," they concluded.

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