Journal of Prosthetic Dentistry

Effect of CAD-CAM tool deterioration on the trueness of ceramic restorations

Published:December 17, 2020DOI:


      Statement of problem

      Tools will gradually deteriorate with repetitive milling. However, tool lifetime can vary depending on the type of milling machine, the hardness of the ceramic material, and the size of the restoration. Studies evaluating the effect of tool deterioration on the trueness of milled restorations are lacking.


      The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of tool deterioration on the trueness of milled restorations.

      Material and methods

      A patient requiring a ceramic crown was recruited. Repetitive milling of zirconia crowns (inCoris TZI; Dentsply Sirona) with tungsten carbide rotary instruments and glass-ceramic crowns (VITABLOCS mark II; Vita Zahnfabrik) with diamond rotary instruments was performed by using a 5-axis milling machine (inLab MC X5; Dentsply Sirona) until the machine software program indicated replacing the largest tool. The percentage of deterioration for the largest tool was recorded before each milling. The trueness for different crown areas was evaluated by using a 3-dimensional evaluation software program (Geomagic Control X; 3D systems), and the crowns were clinically evaluated. The crowns were grouped into 4 quadrants as per the deterioration percentage. The Pearson correlation (r) between the deterioration percentage and trueness and linear contrast analysis (partial eta squared [η]) among the groups were performed.


      Glass-ceramic crown areas had low correlation except for mesial (high, r=0.63, high, η=0.37) and distal (medium, r=0.42, high, η= 0.34) areas, whereas zirconia crowns had low correlation for inner and internal areas and medium to high correlation for mesial (r= -0.31, η=0.33), distal (r= -0.53, η=0.36), occlusal (r= -0.32, η=0.164), external (r= 0.69, η=0.52), and marginal (r= -0.44, η=0.19) areas. Zirconia crowns had excellent marginal fit and occlusal contact and light to excellent proximal contact, whereas glass-ceramic crowns had excellent marginal fit, minor to major occlusal correction, and heavy proximal contact.


      The effect of tool deterioration on trueness depended on material type and crown area. Only proximal areas were affected in the glass-ceramic crowns, whereas external, proximal, occlusal, and marginal areas were affected in the zirconia crowns. Trueness did not necessarily reflect the clinical quality of the crown, as both crown types were clinically satisfactory. Although zirconia crowns were overmilled in comparison with the reference design and glass-ceramic crowns, they had better clinical quality.
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