Purpose: To determine, by means of a non-destructive experimental procedure, the effectiveness of adhesive restorations in reducing the cuspal deflection of endodontically treated premolars, with or without root canal fiber posts. Materials and Methods: The cuspal deflection of ten sound, intact maxillary premolars was evaluated. A loading device induced deformation by axial force (ranging from 98 to 294 N) applied on the occlusal surface of teeth while laser sensors registered the amount of deflection. Once tested, teeth were endodontically treated and the marginal ridges were removed. The teeth were randomly divided into two groups and restored with: group 1) dual curing adhesive, flowable composite, and microhybrid composite; group 2) the same materials associated with root canal glass fiber post and composite cement. The cuspal deflection test was repeated with the same protocol after restorative procedures, allowing a direct comparison of the same samples. Statistical analysis was performed using ANOVA at a significance level of 0.05. Results: Different average cuspal deflection was detected in the two groups: composite resin with post insertion resulted in lower deformation compared with composite alone. Mean deflection ranged from 3.43 to 12.17 μm in intact teeth, from 14.42 to 26.93 μm in group 1, and from 15.35 to 20.39 μm in group 2. ANOVA found significant differences (p = 0.02). Conclusion: Bonded composite restorations with fiber posts may be more effective than composite alone in reducing the cuspal deflection in endodontically treated premolars in which the marginal ridges have been lost.
Keywords: fiber post, cuspal deflection, resin-based composite (RBC) restoration