Objectives: The purpose of this study was to determine
the relationship of colour in the CIE L a b scale between the
maxillary central incisors.
Methods: The colour of the maxillary central incisors of 83 patients
was measured (in vivo) using a spectrophotometer. Three
measurements (6 mm diameter) at the centre of the crown of
each of the maxillary central incisors were performed.
Results: The total colour difference (?E ab) showed wide
variability with the average ?E ab = 1.79. The Wilcoxon
Signed Rank Test showed statistically significant differences
(p < 0.05) between maxillary right (11) and left central incisors
(21) in both the L and b colour components. In the a
scale no significant difference was noted.
Conclusion: Small colour differences exist between the
maxillary central incisors in the same individual when evaluated
with a spectrophotometer.
Clinical significance: As there is often a difference between
the colours of the two central incisors in the same patient,
the colour of both the central incisors should be taken
into consideration when shade matching anterior teeth.