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Design for minimizing fracture risk of all-ceramic cantilever dental bridge

Minimization of the peak stresses and fracture incidence induced by mastication function is considered critical in design of all-ceramic dental restorations, especially for cantilever fixed partial dentures (FPDs). The focus of this study is on developing a mechanically-sound optimal design for all-ceramic cantilever dental bridge in a posterior region. The topology optimization procedure in association with Extended Finite Element Method (XFEM) is implemented here to search for the best possible distribution of porcelain and zirconia materials in the bridge structure. The designs with different volume fractions of zirconia are considered. The results show that this new methodology is capable of improving FPD design by minimizing incidence of crack in comparison with the initial design. Potentially, it provides dental technicians with a new design tool to develop mechanically sound cantilever fixed partial dentures for more complicated clinical situation.