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Volume 34 , Issue 4
July/August 2019

Pages 1007–1014

Accuracy of Multi-implant Impressions Using 3D-Printing Custom Trays and Splinting Versus Conventional Techniques for Complete Arches

Yanping Liu, DDS/Ping Di, DDS, MSD, PhD/Yijiao Zhao, MEng/Qiang Hao/Jiehua Tian, DDS/Hongyan Cui

PMID: 31107937
DOI: 10.11607/jomi.7049

Purpose: To assess the three-dimensional (3D) accuracy of multi-implant impressions for complete arches obtained using 3D-printing technology, and to determine the clinical feasibility of this approach by comparing the results obtained with those obtained with conventional impression techniques. Materials and Methods: A maxillary model matrix with four implant analogs was used to fabricate 10 stone reference models (control) to simulate edentulous patients. Ten 3D-printed impressions were made using polylactic acid custom open trays with component splinting (3D-printed group). To make 10 conventional impressions of the reference models, the poly(methyl methacrylate) open trays with splinting technique was used (conventional group). Impressions were poured with a type IV dental stone, which had been digitalized utilizing a high-resolution laboratory scanner after connecting the polymer scan bodies. Standard tessellation language (STL) datasets from the two groups of stone models were superimposed with the corresponding reference models. The interimplant distances and interimplant angulations for each implant pair were measured for the reference models and for the two test groups’ definitive models, to assess 3D deviations. In addition, the mechanical properties of polylactic acid and poly(methyl methacrylate) tray materials were compared by means of three-point loading and tensile bond tests. The Student t test was used to compare the differences in implant position and mechanical properties between the two groups, while implant angulations were analyzed with Wilcoxon’s rank-sum test, at P = .05. Results: There was less implant-position deviation for the 3D-printed group (mean ± SD: 56.37 ± 12.52 μm) than for the conventional group (71.94 ± 18.86 μm) (P = .014). No significant differences were found in angular deviation between the two groups (P > .05). Flexural strength results suggested that polylactic acid (112.7 ± 1.62 MPa) was stronger than poly(methyl methacrylate) (104.0 ± 2.17 MPa; P < .0001). The tensile bond strength of polylactic acid (0.07 ± 0.005 MPa) was higher than that of poly(methyl methacrylate) (0.03 ± 0.004 MPa; P < .0001). Conclusion: The 3D-printing multi-implant impression technique could be an alternative to conventional impression techniques for complete arches.

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