Real Time ROI: Zahn Dental’s Zirlux FC2 full-contour zirconia

June 17, 2014
Terri Lively
Issue 4

Dentists and labs looking to deliver durable, esthetic indirect restorations have plenty of options. One such option is to work with Zirlux to deliver highly esthetic, full-contour restorations.

Dentists and labs looking to deliver durable, esthetic indirect restorations have plenty of options. One such option is to work with Zirlux to deliver highly esthetic, full-contour restorations.

Zirlux can be prescribed for copings, crowns, bridges including long span bridges, inlays and onlays.

Zirlux full-contour zirconia is formulated to provide an alternative to a traditional PFM that exceeds both clinical and patient demand for superior esthetics, strength and function. Even the most challenging cases can be fabricated using state-of-the-art CAD/CAM technology and Zirlux FC2.

We recently spoke to both a dentist and a lab about their experience in working with Zirlux FC2. Here’s what they had to say:

What the clinician had to say about Zirlux FC2

Dr. Joseph Giovannone, DDS, of Utica, N.Y. has been practicing since 1980 and says:

I mostly prescribed high noble PFMs over the 30-plus years I have practiced. My experience with hand-built PFMs has been very successful, but, like most dentists, I had the occasional failure of hand-built feldspathic porcelain, some consistency issues, not to mention the ever-increasing cost of high noble alloy and labor. As my dental laboratory transitioned to digital processes, I prescribe full-contour zirconia crowns and bridges for my posterior restorations.

DLP: You didn’t initially like zirconia products. Why?

JG: It was hard as a rock and it was hard to learn to work with. I also liked to use lithium disilicate because it’s prettier. But Zirlux FC2 is catching up because they are getting more color and translucency in the material. Not quite the same as lithium disilicate, but it’s definitely closer.

DLP: What have you noticed is a benefit since you converted to using Zirlux in your cases?

JG: As dentists, we have to be aware of grinding. Bruxers of any kind will damage dental work so it’s important to get them (the patients) into nightguards. Most grinders will damage a traditional PFM crown, particularly in the posterior teeth. Zirlux zirconia holds up well against grinders. Zirconia has much more strength than lithium disilicate. I prefer the zirconia for the posterior. The front teeth take less stress so you have more options for materials.

Also, the whole CAD/CAM computer age and the technology is so accurate and efficient that the fits are great. We don’t have to do as many adjustments in the chair. This process is done more effectively, more efficiently and more accurately and the crowns are less likely to break.

Artistic digital design and esthetic zirconia milled restoration using Zirlux FC2

DLP: How does that efficiency help you?

JG: It seems to go smoother and faster with better contact during the final fitting and you don’t have to make as many adjustments to the bite and the contact.

You can prepare the teeth the same way. There are nice shapers you can do with Zirlux though. But you still do all of the same things you used to do when you use a PFM with metal coping. So it’s not a big change. You can still do your same technique. You still do the same crown. You just adjust them less.

The lab’s point of view

Paul L. Giovannone, owner and CEO of Biogenic Dental Corporation and Affiliates, says:

There are an awful lot of materials on the market. I probably get a new zirconia product to try everyday in the mail as a free sample. It comes down to, ‘Does this material have the quality to do what we want it to do?’ The Zirlux FC2 system does. The Zirlux material is pre-shaded and that’s huge from a matching anterior tooth perspective. What we have found with multiple units, full mouth rehab and lower anteriors, FC2 is good for matching A1 and A2, the brighter shades. Plus with Zirlux, the fact that you are dealing with reputable companies that are interested in your business, like Henry Schein, is a deciding factor.

DLP: Can you please explain why this product is best for the most challenging cases?

PG: They give you a high level of strength in a posterior tooth, even more than with a PFM. Zirlux FC2 also allows for a monolithic crown. To have a monolithic crown, we can keep a 1/2mm of material and still be strong. In the case of Zirlux, we can tell the clinician to ‘stay in the enamel, prep less.’

DLP: How does Zirlux FC2 help your bottom line?

PG: A lot of laboratories have changed to using monolithic for PFMs because we are geared to do this; a monolithic crown is way more efficient and less expensive to make.

From a business standpoint, using Zirlux is a win-win situation by providing a better quality crown for the clinician and a better business model for the lab. Efficiency is paramount for a dental lab. We must make crowns for a reasonable amount. Pre-shaded Zirlux allows us to do that.

DLP: Can you explain the benefits of the simple stain and glaze technique?

PG: Since the system has five pre-shaded discs, some of the cases are going to need some added color. We can stain or glaze pretty simply.

The one thing we do is a diamond polish on any occluding surfaces after glazing. The pre-shaded quality of Zirlux becomes an important factor at this point. When you use materials that are strictly surface stained, you’ll end up with white spots and we don’t get that with Zirlux FC2.

DLP: How have the changes in the material science helped the dental lab industry perform better for clinicians?

PG: Material science is moving as fast as technology, which is important at this stage. The first materials were awful; to use the words of big advertising companies, ‘they were the beast, not the beauty.’

It’s always about quality. It’s always about the product we provide to the doctors. Today, as we have evolved … what a change in acceptance. What a change in the translucency and the appearance. The materials are evolving. We are looking forward to the next level. Products like Zirlux FC2 are only getting better.

This article originally appeared in the April 2014 issue of DLP. To learn more about current lab products, subscribe to DLP's newsletter: http://bit.ly/13JeDYN