Comparison of the marginal fit of lithium disilicate crowns fabricated with CAD/CAM technology by using conventional impressions and two intraoral digital scanners


Statement of problem

Conventional impression materials and techniques have been used successfully to fabricate fixed restorations. Recently, digital pathways have been developed, but insufficient data are available regarding their marginal accuracy.


The purpose of this in vitro study was to compare the marginal gap discrepancy of lithium disilicate single crowns fabricated with computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) technology by using both conventional and 2 digital impression techniques.

Material and methods

One typodont maxillary right central incisor was prepared for a ceramic crown. Ten impressions were made by using each method: conventional with polyvinyl siloxane impression material, Lava COS (3M ESPE), and iTero (Cadent) intraoral scanning devices. Lithium disilicate (e.max CAD) crowns were fabricated with CAD/CAM technology, and the marginal gap was measured for each specimen at 4 points under magnification with a stereomicroscope. The mean measurement for each location and overall mean gap size by group were calculated. Statistically significant differences among the impression techniques were tested with F and t tests (α=.05).


The average (±SD) gap for the conventional impression group was 112.3 (±35.3) μm. The digital impression groups had similar average gap sizes; the Lava group was 89.8 (±25.4) μm, and the iTero group was 89.6 (±30.1) μm. No statistically significant difference was found in the effects among impression techniques (P=.185)


Within the limitations of this study, digital and conventional impressions were found to produce crowns with similar marginal accuracy.


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