A comparison of the flexural strength of rapid manufacture cobalt chrome and conventionally cast cobalt chrome alloy
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Objectives: The aim of this study was to compare the flexural strength of rapid manufactured cobalt chrome (Co/Cr) and conventionally cast Co/Cr. The null hypothesis being that there was no significant difference in the flexural strength between CAD/CAM/RP and cast Co/Cr. Materials and Methods: Group 1 consisted of 12 samples which were 3D printed in polylactic acid (PLA) and cast in Co/Cr. Group 2 consisted of 12 direct metal laser sintered (DMLS) Co/Cr samples. A three-point bend test was carried out on all samples from both groups using a LS100 Plus Universal Testing machine until sample fracture. Data analysis was conducted through an unpaired t test. Results: The unpaired t test provided a P value of P < 0.05 with a confidence interval of 95% which is considered to be statistically significant. The results of Group 1 (Cast) and Group 2 (DMLS) produced mean MPa and standard deviation (SD) values of 1212.98 and 91.86 SD, 2144.08 and 34.05 SD respectively. Results show Group 2 (DMLS) is a stronger and more consistent material than Group 1 (Cast). Conclusion: From the results, it can be concluded that prostheses fabricated from DMLS Co/Cr were significantly stronger and more consistent than conventionally cast Co/Cr prostheses. However, a small sample size was used in this study; a larger sample group may potentially provide differing results.
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