New critical summary from the American Dental Association Center for Evidence-based Dentistry


The latest critical summary to come from the ADA-EBD Center is of a 2010 review by Schley et al. The aim of the original review was to assess the 5-year survival rates of all-ceramic zirconia-based fixed dental prostheses (FDPs) and to analyze technical and biological complications.

The reviewer highlighted a number of issues with the review including the use of just a single electronic database (although supported by a manual one) and a lack of a quality assessment of the selected papers.   Nine small prospective studies were included with heterogeneity in veneering and ceramic systems. The overall 5-year mean survival rate was 94.29% (95% CI: 58.98-99.32%) for all FDPs but is lower for complication free survival rate to 76.41% (95% CI: 42.42-91.60%) these in the main were technical complications – mainly chipping.

The reviewer also highlights a 2012 review by Raigrodski et al  (See Dental Elf 9th March 2012), which included one randomised controlled trial and 11 prospective cohorts with survival rates ranging from 73.9% to 100%.


ADA-EBD Summary -5-year survival rate of short-unit zirconia fixed dental prostheses appears promising with possible chipping complications.

Schley JS, Heussen N, Reich S, Fischer J, Haselhuhn K, Wolfart S. Survival probability of zirconia-based fixed dental prostheses up to 5 yr: a systematic review of the literature. Eur J Oral Sci. 2010 Oct;118(5):443-50. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0722.2010.00767.x. Review. PubMed PMID: 20831577.

Dental Elf 28th June 2012

Dental Elf 9th March 2012


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Derek Richards

Derek Richards is a specialist in dental public health, Director of the Centre for Evidence-Based Dentistry and Specialist Advisor to the Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme (SDCEP) Development Team. A former editor of the Evidence-Based Dentistry Journal and chief blogger for the Dental Elf website until December 2023. Derek has been involved with a wide range of evidence-based initiatives both nationally and internationally since 1994. Derek retired from the NHS in 2019 remaining as a part-time senior lecturer at Dundee Dental School until the end of 2023.

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