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Volume 28 , Issue 1
January/February 2013

Pages e27–e38


Finite Element Analysis of Stress Distribution with Splinted and Nonsplinted Maxillary Anterior Fixed Prostheses Supported by Zirconia or Titanium Implants


Bilge Turhan Bal, DDS, PhD/Alper Çaglar, DDS, PhD/Cemal Aydın, DDS, PhD/Handan Yılmaz, DDS, PhD/Merve Bankoglu, DDS/Atılım Eser, MSc


PMID: 23377079
DOI: 10.11607/jomi.2442

Purpose: The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effect of splinting titanium (Ti) or zirconia (Zr) implants supporting maxillary anterior fixed prostheses on the stress levels and patterns in the implants, prostheses, and the surrounding bone; and to compare the effects of Zr and Ti implant materials on the stress distribution in splinted and nonsplinted designs via finite element modeling. Materials and Methods: Zr and Ti dental implants and the anterior maxilla were modeled. In the nonsplinted design (D1), implants were placed into the maxillary left central incisor and canine regions, and a three-unit zirconia fixed prosthesis was modeled. In the splinted design (D2), a symmetric model of D1 was generated and the two prostheses were splinted together to creat a six-unit prosthesis. Loading was applied horizontally and obliquely. Von Mises, tensile, and compressive stresses were evaluated in the implants, prostheses, and surrounding bone. Results: Under both loading conditions, the stresses on the D2 implants were lower than those in the D1 implants. Stresses were concentrated on the neck of the implant and decreased through the apex. All of the stress values in cortical bone in D1 were slightly higher than in D2 for both implant materials under both loading conditions. Conclusion: When the implants were splinted together, stresses were reduced in the supporting bone and implants in both loading conditions, but increased stress was observed in the prostheses under oblique loading. Intense stress concentrations were found in the connector of the splinted prosthesis and the cervical region of the nonsplinted prosthesis. Zr and Ti implants showed very similar stress distributions in all materials. Under oblique loading, lower stresses occurred in implants and the prosthesis core material when Ti implants were used. Int J Oral Maxillofac Implants 2013;28:e27–e38. doi: 10.11607/jomi.2442


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