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Am J Orthod Dentofacial Orthop. 2012 Mar;141(3):279-88. doi: 10.1016/j.ajodo.2011.09.008.

Effects of thread depth, taper shape, and taper length on the mechanical properties of mini-implants.

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School of Dentistry, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan.



The primary stability of a mini-implant is critical, since most orthodontic mini-implant failures occur at an early stage. As orthodontic mini-implants have restrictions in diameter and length, an optimal design of the shape is important for sufficient primary stability. The purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of various mini-implants design factors, including thread depth, degree of taper, and taper length on insertion torque, pullout strength, stiffness, and screw displacement before failure.


Finite element analyses were conducted first for identification of optimal design parameters. Four types of mini-implants with different design parameters were then custom manufactured and tested mechanically. All mechanical tests were performed in artificial bone with homogenous density to remove the variability associated with bone.


Finite element results showed that, for mini-implants with a fixed external diameter of 2 mm, a thread length of 9.82 mm, and a pitch of 0.75 mm, those with greater thread depths, smaller taper degrees, and shorter taper lengths generated higher maximum stresses on the bone and thread elements. These mini-implants also had larger relative displacements. Maximum pullout resistance was attained with a core/external diameter ratio of 0.68. All mechanical results were compatible with the findings in the finite element analyses.


Modification of the mini-implant design can substantially affect the mechanical properties. The finite element method is an effective tool to identify optimal design parameters and allow for improved mini-implant designs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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