The accuracy of clinician evaluation of interproximal contacts using different methods

Paul A. Hansen, Ariel Atwood, Mallory Shanahan, Mark Beatty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Statement of problem: Complete seating of a single crown may not be possible if the interproximal contacts are excessively tight. Incomplete seating can lead to open margins, inflammation of the gingival tissue, and recurrent dental caries. Purpose: The purpose of this in vitro study was to determine the accuracy of 3 different methods of evaluating interproximal contacts when seating a single crown. Material and methods: Thirty-five restorative dentists practicing in the Lincoln, Nebraska, area were polled to determine the methods they used most commonly to evaluate the interproximal contacts of crowns. These dentists then evaluated the interproximal contacts of 9 anatomic contour zirconia crowns on a dentoform using 3 different methods: floss and explorer, occlusal articulating film (AccuFilm), and shim stock. Crown fit was evaluated using 1 method at a time. Each crown was recorded as either “accept” or “reject” according to the individual clinician. All data were analyzed with the McNemar test (α=.05). Results: Of the 35 restorative dentists polled, 34 identified floss and explorer, 9 identified occlusal articulating film, 3 identified shim stock, and 3 identified an occlusal spray as their method of evaluating interproximal contacts. These methods were used either alone or in conjunction with other methods. Evaluation of the in vitro data revealed that shim stock and occlusal articulating film were significantly more accurate than floss and explorer for assessing interproximal contacts in poorly fitting crowns (P<.001). For well-fitting crowns, shim stock and occlusal articulating film were significantly more accurate than floss and explorer (P<.001). Conclusions: This study showed that the floss and explorer method was the least accurate means of evaluating the interproximal fit of crowns. Shim stock provided the most accurate method of evaluating interproximal contact, and occlusal articulating film provided both high accuracy and a visible mark to facilitate adjustment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)284-289
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Prosthetic Dentistry
Volume123
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oral Surgery

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