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Volume 29 , Issue 2
March/April 2014

Pages 338–343


A Pilot Study of Joint Stability at the Zirconium or Titanium Abutment/Titanium Implant Interface

Yeliz Cavusoglu, DDS, PhD/Kıvanç Akça, DDS, PhD/Rıza Gürbüz, BSc, PhD/Murat Cavit Cehreli, DDS, PhD


PMID: 24683559
DOI: 10.11607/jomi.3116

Purpose: To compare the interfaces of loaded and unloaded zirconium and titanium abutments with titanium implants using scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Materials and Methods: Zirconium and titanium abutments (n = 5 per group; four test and one control) were torque-tightened into titanium implants secured into metal blocks, and computer-aided design/computer-assisted manufacture–based zirconium oxide copings were fabricated and cemented to the abutments with temporary resin-based cement. Specimens of each restoration were subjected to cyclic axial and lateral loading of 30 N at 2 Hz for 500,000 cycles using a servohydraulic test system; control specimens were left unloaded. Then, the abutment/implant assemblies were embedded in acrylic resin, sectioned longitudinally along the midline, and inspected under SEM with x-ray microanalysis. Results: Loosening or fracture of the copings and implant components was not observed after dynamic loading in both groups. SEM and x-ray microanalysis revealed unexpected microleakage of acrylic resin at the interface. Acrylic resin in the implants tightened to the titanium abutments was limited to the cervical part, and the components displayed scratched and smashed regions, suggesting slight deformation of the implant neck. Microleakage and pooling of acrylic resin were observed approaching the screw joint in loaded implants tightened to zirconia abutments, and the amount of microleakage was greater than in the unloaded control specimens, which had a larger microgap than the titanium abutment/titanium implant interface. Loaded zirconia abutments were associated with wear, scratches, and, in one sample, chipping. Conclusions: Zirconium abutment/titanium implant interface may be susceptible to wear of the abutment coupled with deformation of the implant neck greater than that associated with the conventional titanium abutment/titanium implant interface under dynamic loading.


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