Surface analysis of failed Zirconia and Titanium one-piece implants

Allauddin Siddiqi, Sobia Zafar, Andrew Tawse-Smith, Liz Girvan

Research output: Other contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Zirconia is an emerging implant biomaterial with promising results, however, little is known about bacterial adhesion on zirconia implant surfaces in oral conditions. Differences in implant biomaterials and designs may influence the possible invasion of oral microbes.

Objective: The study aimed to examine the presence of bacteria and surface chemistry of one-piece zirconia and titanium implants retrieved from patients due to mobility.

Method: Six one-piece implants (zirconia=3 and titanium=3) were analysed using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS). For SEM analysis, each implant sample with adherent bacteria was fixed in a 0.1M phosphate buffer containing 2.5% glutaraldehyde. This was followed by sixty minutes incubation in 1% osmium tetroxide. The specimens were dehydrated in increasing concentration of ethanol and dried in a Bal-Tec CPD-030 critical point dryer. Samples for EDS analysis were coated with 10nm carbon using an Emitech K575X Peltier-cooled high resolution sputter coater with 250x carbon coating attachment. The samples were then coated with 10nm platinum palladium using the same coater and were examined and photographed under scanning electron microscope (Carl Zeiss Incorporated, Oberkochen, Germany).

Result: SEM analysis confirmed the presence of patches of bacilli and cocci bacteria on the collar and thread of titanium implants. Large areas of bacilli were also found on the collar of zirconia implants. There were possible areas of bacteria on the root-tip of the examined implants. EDS analysis showed carbon, oxygen and potassium spikes and zirconia dominated the spectra. Multiple spikes of hafnium were also detected. Interestingly, some spikes of titanium and aluminium were also observed on all surfaces.

Conclusion: Bacterial involvement could have played a role in implant failure. No differences were observed in regard to bacterial adhesion on the surface of titanium and zirconia one-piece implants.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2014
EventInternational Association for Dental Research: 2014 IADR/AMER General Session - Cape Town, South Africa
Duration: 25 Jun 201428 Jun 2014


ConferenceInternational Association for Dental Research
Country/TerritorySouth Africa
CityCape Town


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