Treatment Prognosis of Restored Teeth with Crown Lengthening vs. Deep Margin Elevation: A Systematic Review

Materials (Basel). 2021 Nov 8;14(21):6733. doi: 10.3390/ma14216733.


Crown lengthening surgery and deep margin elevation are two distinct approaches used to manage decayed teeth. This systematic review examined the survival rate of badly decayed teeth when restored using the crown lengthening technique and compared it to the deep margin elevation technique. The search was conducted during July 2020 and then again updated at the end of July 2021, and no restriction concerning publication status and time was applied during the search. Cochrane Database, EBSCO, Scopus, and Medline databases were searched electronically for relevant literature. Google Scholar was used as a secondary source. Predefined inclusion and exclusion criteria were used to select the relevant articles. PRISMA guidelines were followed. The focused PICO question was: 'Does the crown lengthening technique (I) provide a better survival rate (O) than deep margin elevation technique (C) following the restoration of badly decayed teeth (P).' A total of six articles were included after performing screening based on the eligibility criteria. Four studies focused on crown lengthening while two focused on deep margin elevation technique. A majority of the studies showed a high risk of bias owing to methodological insufficiencies. Crown lengthening (CL) treated cases showed a change in the free gingival margin at six months post-surgery. A tissue rebound was seen that was correlated to the periodontal biotype. Teeth treated with the deep margin elevation (DME) technique showed high survivability. There is a lack of high-quality trials examining surgical comparisons between CL and DME with long-term follow-up. Patient- and dentist-reported outcomes have not been given adequate consideration in the literature. Based on the limited evidence, it can be concluded that for restorative purposes, crown lengthening surgery can be successful in long-term retention of restored teeth. However, the deep margin elevation technique has a better survival ratio. Future well-designed and executed research will have an effect on the evidence and level of certainty for the best approach to treating severely decayed teeth.

Keywords: crown lengthening; deep margin elevation; restoration; systematic review; tooth decay.

Publication types

  • Review