Clinical Report| Volume 129, ISSUE 5, P798-804, May 2023

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Digital workflow and virtual validation of a 3D-printed definitive hollow obturator for a large palatal defect


      This clinical report describes how a hollow obturator prosthesis was designed and fabricated for an 82-year-old partially edentulous patient with a large palatal defect. Computer-aided design (CAD) was used to design, articulate, and align the mandibular denture with the obturator prosthesis. The prosthesis was printed, adjusted chairside, rescanned, and made hollow by using a CAD software program. The prosthesis was printed in resin with a dental 3D printer. Quantitative evaluations of clinical (prosthesis dimensions, rest, and occlusal vertical dimensions) and virtual (surface area, volume, weight, interpoint mismatches, spatial overlap) parameters found that the 3D-printed prosthesis required an additional 5% chairside modification. The greatest differences in volume (24.7% less) and weight (22.2% less) were observed when the modified obturator bulb was made hollow via CAD. Hollowing the bulb, therefore, reduced the spatial overlap in volume by 16.8%.
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