alexa Replacement of amalgams with crowns: a cost-effectiveness analysis.



Author(s): Maryniuk GA, Schweitzer SO, Braun RJ

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Abstract No formal analyses comparing the treatment alternatives of replacing a failed amalgam with either another amalgam or crown have been done to determine the optimum treatment strategy based on lifetime costs to the patient. Using decision analysis, a computer model was developed of the lifetime restorative needs of an adult's posterior tooth. A cost-effectiveness analysis of large amalgams vs crowns was then done to determine the optimum strategy. According to the analyses, the optimum treatment decision is to attempt to replace the failed first amalgam with another amalgam, instead of with a crown. When this amalgam restoration fails, then the subsequent replacement may be with a crown. Potential lifetime cost savings were between 11\% and 24\% if the first replacement was an amalgam. This study concludes that the technique of decision analysis provides the dental community with an effective evaluation tool for the study of clinical decision-making, taking into account all levels of clinical uncertainty.
This article was published in Community Dent Oral Epidemiol and referenced in Dentistry

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