A pilot study to evaluate different palate materials for maxillary complete dentures with xerostomic patients.
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PURPOSE: The hypothesis tested in this pilot study was that materials used for the palatal region of a maxillary denture affect the comfort of the maxillary denture in xerostomic patients. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Xerostomic complete denture wearers were selected to test three different maxillary dentures that were made with different palatal materials. Each denture was worn for a period of 2 weeks. The Kapur Index was used to measure retention. The Oral Health Index Profile (OHIP) was used to determine the patient's perception of each denture after the 2-week period. At the end of the study, the patients were asked to select which of the three dentures they would like as their primary denture. RESULTS: All participants chose the metal-palate dentures, and 4 of 5 selected the titanium-palate denture as their primary denture. Statistical analysis of the OHIP demonstrated that the metal-palate dentures were perceived as being more comfortable than the acrylic-resin dentures. CONCLUSION: This pilot study suggests that for xerostomic patients who have worn complete dentures, their selection of a metal-palate denture as their primary prosthesis strongly suggests that these dentures have properties that make them more comfortable to the patient than acrylic dentures. Subjective patient measurements supported this conclusion that the metal-palate dentures were preferable, while the evaluation method available to the clinician failed to discriminate among the prostheses.