Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the clinical performance of surface-retained adhesive composite fixed partial dentures reinforced by an ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWP) fiber (Ribbond THM). Materials and Methods: Twenty-three surface-retained fiber reinforced composite (FRC) fixed partial dentures (FPD) were placed by two operators in 23 patients, each with a single missing tooth. The restorations included prefabricated composite resin pontics, and no preparations were done on the lingual surfaces of the abutment teeth. The patients were recalled for examinations every year for up to 3 years. Restorations were evaluated directly using the modified Ryge criteria. The minimum observation period was 1 year and the maximum observation period was 3 years. Results: At baseline, 23 restorations were graded as Alpha for all parameters. At one year and two years (n = 21), three Bravos for wear resistance and surface texture/gingival inflammation and two Bravos for color match were observed. Twenty-one of 23 restorations were retained at the end of two years (91.3%) and 78.3% were retained after a maximum of 3 years. Conclusion: The results of this clinical study suggest that UHMWP FRC FPDs are quite acceptable at least for three years. However, further clinical investigations are still needed for improved long-term clinical performance.
Keywords: fiber-reinforced composite fixed partial dentures, clinical evaluation, Ribbond