Objective: This study investigated viscosity and thermal kinetics of 10 selected preheated restorative resin composites and the effect of ultrasound energy on film thickness.
Methods: A range of different resin composites was tested: Charisma Diamond, IPS Empress Direct, Enamel Plus HRi, Essentia, Estelite Omega, Filtek Z100, Filtek Z350 XT, Gradia, TPH Spectrum and VisCalor. A flowable resin composite (Opallis Flow) and two resin cements (RelyX Veneer, Variolink Esthetic LC) also were tested. Viscosity (Pa s) was measured at 37 °C and 69 °C (preheating temperature) using a rheometer. Film thickness (μm) was measured before and after application of ultrasound energy. Temperature loss within resin composite following preheating (°C/s) was monitored. Data were statistically analyzed (α = 0.05).
Results: Viscosity at 69 °C was lower than at 37 °C for all materials except the flowable resin composite. Preheating reduced viscosity between 47% and 92% for the restorative resin composites, which were generally more viscous than the flowable materials. Film thickness varied largely among materials. All preheated resin composites had films thicker than 50 μm without ultrasound energy. Application of ultrasound reduced film thickness between 21% and 49%. Linear and nonlinear regressions did not identify any relationship between filler loading, viscosity, and/or film thickness. All materials showed quick temperature reduction following preheating, showing maximum temperature loss rates after approximately 10 s.
Significance: Distinct restorative resin composites react differently to preheating, affecting viscosity and film thickness. The overall performance of the preheating technique depends on proper material selection and use of ultrasound energy for reducing film thickness.
Keywords: Flowability; Flowable resin composite; Luting; Resin cement; Temperature; Ultrasonics.
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