In yesterday’s post I discussed the protocols for seating an e.max restoration and I was specifically referring to Lithium Disilicate. This created quite a number of questions like, ” I didn’t think you could bond Zirconia?” The questions speak to a confusion that comes up very often in dentistry, and one I hope I can explain in this post. IPS e.max is a system of ceramics from Ivoclar. This system or shall we say family of materials is all marketed and sold under the same name (IPS e.max), but contains a variety of different all ceramic materials. Using the same name is a business decision and many of the dental manufacturers have followed this same protocol. The challenge is that dentists and perhaps ceramists have started to shorthand the material known as Lithium Disilicate with the name e.max, not realizing this actually could be describing several different materials. So when you fill out a lab script and write “e.max” what are you getting? Most likely Lithium Disilicate, but that isn’t a given. So let’s see if we can get to the bottom of it.
The IPS e.max system contains all ceramic that can be either pressed or milled using cad cam technology. Therefore if you or your technician has a technique preference there is a product available for you. There are three varieties of materials the high strength Lithium Disilicate, Zirconium Oxide, fluorapatite and nano-fluorapatite ceramics. Now each of these materials has a slightly different name if you use both its family name and its individual name, so much like it is easier to identify a specific person if you use their first, middle and last name.
- IPS e.max press, designed to be pressed as a core or full contour monolithic restoration.
- IPS e.max CAD, designed to be milled as a core or full contour monolithic restoration.
- IPS e.max ZIrCAD, designed to be milled as a core.
- IPS e.max ZirPress, designed to be pressed over a Zirconium Oxide core.
- IPS e.max Ceram, designed to be used as a layering ceramic over Lithium Disilicate or Zirconium Oxide.