In the mouth, inadequately cured dental restorative materials may lead to detrimental consequences in their longevity. As light travels through these photo-curable restorative composites, there is an exponential decrease in light penetration with depth, and therefore the extent of local polymerization is compromised. This phenomenon is termed the “Depth of Cure” issue, which restricts the thickness if increment that each restorative material can be placed and polymerized. The purpose of this research is to develop an easily performed test that provides a correlational value between visually identifiable transition zones within acetone-sonicated, sectioned, cured composite specimens and the extent to which a composite has reached maximal monomer conversion values, to ultimately determine adequacy of polymerization at the depth of cure for certain restorative materials. This test method, proven to be independent of composite type, will be submitted to the working group associated with the revision of the International Organization for Standards Organization 4049 standard, for consideration of further testing and perhaps replacement of the current method. This research provides a fulfillment of the requests from well-respected dental clinicians to provide a clinically relevant and meaningful depth of cure test.
Department of Restorative Sciences
Presentation given at the 18th Annual Phi Kappa Phi Student Research and Fine Arts Conference
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