PURPOSE: Evaluating the effect of a proximal margin elevation technique on marginal adaptation of ceramic inlays.
METHODS: Class II MOD-cavities were prepared in 40 human molars and randomly distributed to four groups (n = 10). In group EN (positive control) proximal margins were located in enamel, 1 mm above the cementoenamel junction, while 2 mm below in groups DE-1In, DE-2In and DE. The groups DE-1In, DE-2In and DE simulated subgingival location of the cervical margin. In group DE-1In one 3 mm and in group DE-2In two 1.5 mm composite layers (Tetric) were placed for margin elevation of the proximal cavities using Syntac classic as an adhesive. The proximal cavities of group DE remained untreated and served as a negative control. In all groups, ceramic inlays (Cerec 3D) were adhesively inserted. Replicas were taken before and after thermomechanical loading (1.200.000 cycles, 50/5°C, max. load 49 N). Marginal integrity (tooth-composite, composite-inlay) was evaluated with scanning electron microscopy (200×). Percentage of continuous margin (% of total proximal margin length) was compared between groups before and after cycling using ANOVA and Scheffé post-hoc test.
RESULTS: After thermomechanical loading, no significant differences were observed between the different groups with respect to the interface composite-inlay and tooth-composite with margins in dentin. The interface tooth-composite in enamel of group EN was significantly better compared to group DE-2In, which was not different to the negative control group DE and DE-1In.
CONCLUSION: Margin elevation technique by placement of a composite filling in the proximal box before insertion of a ceramic inlay results in marginal integrities not different from margins of ceramic inlays placed in dentin.