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Evaluation of Load-bearing Capacity of Interim Fixed Partial Dentures Reinforced with Glass Fibers: An In Vitro Study.

AIM: To compare the load-bearing capacity of three and four-unit fixed partial denture (FPD) with two different designs of pontics reinforced with industrial glass fibers at two different positions of the FPD.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 64 samples were made with Bis-acryl composite temporary material and reinforced with industrial glass fibers (E-glass). The specimens were divided into eight groups (groups I-VIII) depending on the number of units, type of pontic design and area of placement of fibers. A universal testing machine was used to evaluate and compare the load-bearing capacity of the specimens. The evaluated data were statistically analyzed using one-way ANOVA and Bonferroni post hoc tests ( p ≤ 0.05).

RESULTS: Three-unit interim FPD and modified ridge lap pontic design showed greater load-bearing capacity after reinforcement with glass fibers than a four-unit interim FPD and hygienic pontic design, respectively. Fiber placement at the occlusal plus connector area as well as the cervical plus connector area had comparable results.

CONCLUSION: Industrial glass fibers (E-glass) could be used as a cheaper alternative but clinical performance and their safety are yet to be evaluated.

CLINICAL SIGNIFICANCE: Reinforcement with industrial-grade glass fibers can be a cheaper option for increasing the load-bearing capacity of interim partial dentures, but it needs to be studied in vivo through further studies.

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