Available online 6 May 2014
The aim of this study was to compare the microtensile bond strength (μTBS) and resin penetration into dentin of three universal adhesives (UAs) applied in two different etching modes (i.e. self-etch or etch-and-rinse). The effect of thermocycling on the μTBS was also evaluated.
The occlusal third of sound human molars was removed and the exposed surfaces were treated with three UAs (Futurabond Universal, Scotchbond Universal Adhesive and All-Bond Universal) in self-etch or etch-and-rinse mode. Two one-step self-etch adhesives (Futurabond DC and Futurabond M) were applied on additional teeth as reference. After composite build up, the specimens were stored for 24 hours in distilled water at 37° C or thermocycled for 5000 cycles. Composite/dentin beams were prepared (1 mm2) and μTBS test was performed. Data was analyzed using three-way ANOVA and Tukey's test (α=0.05). One additional tooth was prepared for each group for evaluation of infiltration ability into dentin by dyeing the adhesives with a fluorochrome (Rhodamine B). After longitudinal sectioning, the generated interfaces were examined under confocal light scanning microscopy.
The addition of an etching step did not significantly affect the μTBS of none of the UAs, when compared to their self-etch application mode. All pre-etched specimens showed considerably longer resin tags and thicker hybrid layers. Thermocycling had no significant effect on the μTBS of the UAs.
Application of an etching step prior to UAs improves their dentin penetration, but does not affect their bond strength to dentin after 24 h or after thermocycling for 5000 cycles.
Clinical Significance: Similar bond strength values were observed for the UAs regardless of application mode, which makes them reliable for working under different clinical conditions.