Research and Education| Volume 129, ISSUE 1, P160-165, January 2023

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Trueness and precision of complete-arch photogrammetry implant scanning assessed with a coordinate-measuring machine


      Statement of problem

      Photogrammetry technology has been used for the digitalization of multiple dental implants, but its trueness and precision remain uncertain.


      The purpose of this in vitro investigation was to compare the accuracy (trueness and precision) of multisite implant recordings between the conventional method and a photogrammetry dental system.

      Material and methods

      A definitive cast of an edentulous maxilla with 6 implant abutment replicas was tested. Two different recording methods were compared, the conventional technique and a photogrammetry digital scan (n=10). For the conventional group, the impression copings were splinted to an additively manufactured cobalt-chromium metal with autopolymerizing acrylic resin, followed by recording the maxillary edentulous arch with an elastomeric impression using an additively manufactured open custom tray. For the photogrammetry group, a scan body was placed on each implant abutment replica, followed by the photogrammetry digital scan. A coordinate-measuring machine was selected to assess the linear, angular, and 3-dimensional discrepancies between the implant abutment replica positions of the reference cast and the specimens by using a computer-aided design program. The Shapiro-Wilk test showed that the data were not normally distributed. The Mann-Whitney U test was used to analyze the data (α=.05).


      The conventional group obtained an overall accuracy (trueness ±precision) value of 18.40 ±6.81 μm, whereas the photogrammetry group showed an overall scanning accuracy value of 20.15 ±25.41 μm. Significant differences on the discrepancies on the x axis (U=1380.00, P=.027), z axis (U=601.00, P<.001), XZ angle (U=869.00, P<.001), and YZ angle (U=788.00, P<.001) were observed when the measurements of the 2 groups were compared. Furthermore, significant 3-dimensional discrepancy for implant 1 (U=0.00, P<.001), implant 2 (U=0.00, P<.001), implant 3 (U=6.00, P<.001), and implant 6 (U=9.00, P<.001) were computed between the groups.


      The conventional method obtained statistically significant higher overall accuracy values compared with the photogrammetry system tested, with a trueness difference of 1.8 μm and a precision difference of 18.6 μm between the systems. The conventional method transferred the implant abutment positions with a uniform 3-dimensional discrepancy, but the photogrammetry system obtained an uneven overall discrepancy among the implant abutment positions.
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