The purpose of this study was to determine the enamel bond durability of three universal adhesives in different etching modes through fatigue testing. The three universal adhesives used were Scotchbond Universal, Prime&Bond Elect universal dental adhesive, and All-Bond Universal light-cured dental adhesive. A single- step self-etch adhesive, Clearfil S3 Bond Plus was used as a control. The shear bond strength (SBS) and shear fatigue strength (SFS) to human enamel were evaluated in total-etch mode and self-etch mode. A stainless steel metal ring with an internal diameter of 2.4 mm was used to bond the resin composite to the flat-ground (4000-grit) tooth surfaces for determination of both SBS and SFS. For each enamel surface treatment, 15 specimens were prepared for SBS and 30 specimens for SFS. The staircase method for fatigue testing was then used to determine the SFS of the resin composite bonded to the enamel using 10-Hz frequencies for 50,000 cycles or until failure occurred. Scanning electron microscopy was used to observe representative debonded specimen surfaces and the resin-enamel interfaces. Takayuki Suzuki, DDS, Department of Operative Dentistry, A two-way analysis of variance and the Tukey post hoc test were used for analysis of the SBS data, whereas a modified t-test with Bonferroni correction was used for the SFS data. All adhesives in total-etch mode showed significantly higher SBS and SFS values than those in self-etch mode. Although All-Bond Universal in self-etch mode showed a significantly lower SBS value than the other adhesives, there was no significant difference in SFS values among the adhesives in this mode. All adhesives showed higher SFS:SBS ratios in total-etch mode than in self-etch mode. With regard to the adhesive systems used in this study, universal adhesives showed higher enamel bond strengths in total-etch mode. Although the influence of different etching modes on the enamel-bonding performance of universal adhesives was found to be dependent on the adhesive material, total-etch mode effectively increased the enamel bond strength and durability, as measured by fatigue testing.
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