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Volume 26 , Issue 3
May/June 2011

Pages 482–491

Platform Switching: Biomechanical Evaluation Using Three-Dimensional Finite Element Analysis

Lucas Fernando Tabata, DDS, PhD/Eduardo Passos Rocha, DDS, PhD/Valentim Adelino Ricardo Barao, DDS, MSc/Wirley Gonçalves Assunçao, DDS, PhD

PMID: 21691594

Purpose: The objective of this study was to evaluate, using three-dimensional finite element analysis (3D FEA), the stress distribution in peri-implant bone tissue, implants, and prosthetic components of implant-supported single crowns with the use of the platform-switching concept. Materials and Methods: Three 3D finite element models were created to replicate an external-hexagonal implant system with peri-implant bone tissue in which three different implant-abutment configurations were represented. In the regular platform (RP) group, a regular 4.1-mm-diameter abutment (UCLA) was connected to regular 4.1-mm-diameter implant. The platform-switching (PS) group was simulated by the connection of a wide implant (5.0 mm diameter) to a regular 4.1-mm-diameter UCLA abutment. In the wide-platform (WP) group, a 5.0-mm-diameter UCLA abutment was connected to a 5.0-mm-diameter implant. An occlusal load of 100 N was applied either axially or obliquely on the models using ANSYS software. Results: Both the increase in implant diameter and the use of platform switching played roles in stress reduction. The PS group presented lower stress values than the RP and WP groups for bone and implant. In the peri-implant area, cortical bone exhibited a higher stress concentration than the trabecular bone in all models and both loading situations. Under oblique loading, higher intensity and greater distribution of stress were observed than under axial loading. Platform switching reduced von Mises (17.5% and 9.3% for axial and oblique loads, respectively), minimum (compressive) (19.4% for axial load and 21.9% for oblique load), and maximum (tensile) principal stress values (46.6% for axial load and 26.7% for oblique load) in the peri-implant bone tissue. Conclusion: Platform switching led to improved biomechanical stress distribution in peri-implant bone tissue. Oblique loads resulted in higher stress concentrations than axial loads for all models. Wide-diameter implants had a large influence in reducing stress values in the implant system. Int J Oral Maxillofac Implants 2011;26:482–491

Key words: biomechanics, dental implants, finite element analysis, platform switching, prosthesis

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