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Oper Dent. 2010 Jul-Aug;35(4):470-81. doi: 10.2341/09-373-L.

Performance of different polishing techniques for direct CAD/CAM ceramic restorations.

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  • 1Department of Preventive, Restorative and Pediatric Dentistry, School of Dental Medicine, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.


This in vitro study evaluated the performance of three ceramic and two commonly used polishing methods on two CAD/CAM ceramics. Surface roughness and quality were compared. A glazed group (GLGR) of each ceramic material served as reference. One-hundred and twenty specimens of VITABLOCS Mark II (VITA) and 120 specimens of IPS Empress CAD (IPS) were roughened in a standardized manner. Twenty VITA and 20 IPS specimens were glazed (VITA Akzent Glaze/Empress Universal Glaze). Five polishing methods were investigated (n=20/group): 1) EVE Diacera W11DC-Set (EVE), 2) JOTA 9812-Set (JOTA), 3) OptraFine-System (OFI), 4) Sof-Lex 2382 discs (SOF) and 5) Brownie/Greenie/Occlubrush (BGO). Polishing quality was measured with a surface roughness meter (Ra and Rz values). The significance level was set at alpha=0.05. Kruskal Wallis tests and pairwise Wilcoxon rank sum tests with Bonferroni-Holm adjustment were used. Qualitative surface evaluation of representative specimens was done with SEM. On VITA ceramics, SOF produced lower Ra (p<0.00001) but higher Rz values than GLGR (p=0.003); EVE, JOTA, OFI and BGO yielded significantly higher Ra and Rz values than GLGR. On IPS ceramics, SOF and JOTA exhibited lower Ra values than GLGR (p<0.0001). Equivalent Ra but significantly higher Rz values occurred between GLGR and EVE, OFI or BGO. VITA and IPS exhibited the smoothest surfaces when polished with SOF. Nevertheless, ceramic polishing systems are still of interest to clinicians using CAD/CAM, as these methods are universally applicable and showed an increased durability compared to the investigated silicon polishers.

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