Laboratory Trends for Removable Prosthodontics: A Comparison of Two Surveys

Academic Article


  • Purpose: The purpose of this survey was to assess dental laboratory technicians’ perceptions of the quality of communication and techniques used when receiving removable prosthodontic cases. Additionally, responses were compared to a 2009 survey and changes in trends were evaluated. Materials and Methods: An eleven-question anonymous response survey was developed based on a 2009 survey that assessed dental laboratory technicians’ perceptions. The survey was distributed via Qualtrics to members of the National Association of Dental Laboratories (NADL) The survey included questions related to detail of instruction, quality of work received, design of the prosthesis, and type of articulator used. Responses were compared to those received in 2009. Results: Fifty-two survey responses were received from dental laboratory technicians. Of these, 12 did not provide removable prosthodontics services and were excluded. The remaining 40 responses were analyzed. Of these, only 3.7% of the responding laboratory technicians reported receiving work authorizations from dentists that were complete enough to do their best work. While roughly half of the respondents (48.49%) expected a dentist to send a design for a cast partial denture framework, most respondents (72.5%) answered that they designed the majority of the partial denture frameworks they fabricated. The majority of respondents reported that complete denture impressions were not border molded in custom trays, and that most dentists did not rearrange or modify a wax setup for complete or partial dentures. These findings were consistent with the trends reported in the 2009 survey. Conclusions: Most dental laboratory technicians answered that based on their selected techniques, dentists tend to complete clinical procedures that minimize patient chair time. While the surveyed technicians appeared satisfied with the quality of work they received, there was a consistent message that communication was frequently inadequate, limiting the technicians ability to fabricate their best work.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Yarborough AB; Clark WA; Givan DA; De Kok IJ
  • Start Page

  • 264
  • End Page

  • 270
  • Volume

  • 30
  • Issue

  • 3