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Volume 13 , Issue 4
July/August 2000

Pages 282-288

A Comparison of Laser-Welded Titanium and Conventional Cast Frameworks Supported by Implants in the Partially Edentulous Jaw: A 3-Year Prospective Multicenter Study

Torsten Jemt, LDS, Odont Dr/PhD/Patrick Henry, BDSc, MSD/Bengt Lindén, LDSc/Ignace Naert, DDS, PhD/Heiner Weber, DDS, PhD/Christina Bergström, MSc

PMID: 11203643

Purpose: The purpose of this prospective multicenter study was to evaluate and compare the clinical performance of laser-welded titanium fixed partial implant-supported prostheses with conventional cast frameworks. Materials and Methods: Forty-two partially edentulous patients were provided with Brånemark system implants and arranged into 2 groups. Group A was provided with a conventional cast framework with porcelain veneers in one side of the jaw and a laser-welded titanium framework with low-fusing porcelain on the other side. The patients in group B had an old implant prosthesis replaced by a titanium framework prosthesis. The patients were followed for 3 years after prosthesis placement. Clinical and radiographic data were collected and analyzed. Results: Only one implant was lost, and all prostheses were still in function after 3 years. The 2 framework designs showed similar clinical performance with few clinical complications. Only one abutment screw (1%) and 9 porcelain tooth units (5%) fractured. Four prostheses experienced loose gold screws (6%). In group A, marginal bone loss was similar for both designs of prostheses, with a mean of 1.0 mm and 0.3 mm in the maxilla and mandible, respectively. No bone loss was observed on average in group B. No significant relationship (P > 0.05) was observed between marginal bone loss and placement of prosthesis margin or prosthesis design. Conclusion: The use of laser-welded titanium frameworks seems to present similar clinical performance to conventional cast frameworks in partial implant situations after 3 years.

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