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Keywords:

  • tooth wear;
  • virtual models;
  • quantitative methods;
  • parameters

Abstract

Tooth wear is an unavoidable process associated with aging. Currently, virtual three-dimensional dental models are widely used and provide an advantage for studying tooth wear. However, there are no wear assessment parameters using virtual tooth models for the quantitative analysis of wear. Therefore, the aim of this study is to develop and evaluate quantitative wear measurement parameters. Ninety maxillary and mandibular dental casts were prepared and rendered as virtual three-dimensional models. For qualitative wear scoring, Hooper's new tooth wear index (NTWI) was used. For quantitative wear measurement, virtual vectors and occlusal planes were generated with reference points. Angles, height, and distance parameters were measured from reference points, vectors or planes. Intra- and interobserver reproducibility was determined for NTWI scoring and quantitative measurements. Quantitatively measurements for all parameters were subgrouped according to age groups and NTWI score groups. The mean and standard deviation were calculated for each group. One-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) test and the coefficients test were performed on the groups. Overall, intra- and interobserver reproducibility was good for both qualitative and quantitative measurement. In the ANOVA test, angle and height parameters showed significant differences between groups, whereas distance parameters did not. Similar results were observed in the coefficients test. However, plane heights and lingual side measurement parameters of the mandible are not recommended. In conclusion, this study indicates that all angle or height parameters of the maxilla and angle or vector height parameters of the buccal side of the mandible can be used as meaningful parameters in a quantitative wear study. Clin. Anat. 25:347–358, 2012. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.