Int J Oral Maxillofac Implants 32 (2017), No. 5 19. Sep. 2017
Purpose: Achievement of high insertion torque values indicating good primary stability is a goal during dental implant placement. The objective of this study was to evaluate whether or not two-piece implants made from zirconia ceramic may be damaged as a result of torque application.
Materials and Methods: A total of 10 two-piece zirconia implants were repeatedly inserted into polyurethane foam material with increasing density and decreasing osteotomy size. The insertion torque applied was measured, and implants were checked for fractures by applying the fluorescent penetrant method. Weibull probability of failure was calculated based on the recorded insertion torque values.
Results: Catastrophic failures could be seen in five of the implants from two different batches at insertion torques ranging from 46.0 to 70.5 Ncm, while the remaining implants (all belonging to one batch) survived. Weibull probability of failure seems to be low at the manufacturerrecommended maximum insertion torque of 35 Ncm. Chipping fractures at the thread tips as well as tool marks were the only otherwise observed irregularities.
Conclusion: While high insertion torques may be desirable for immediate loading protocols, zirconia implants may fracture when manufacturer-recommended insertion torques are exceeded. Evaluating bone quality prior to implant insertion may be useful.
Keywords: dental implant, fluorescence penetrant method, fracture torque, zirconia