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Dr. Waseem Bahjat Mushtaha

PhD in prosthodontics

The removable partial denture must have sufficient

.retention to resist reasonable dislodging forces
:Means of retention
: A-Mechanical means
.Direct retainers-1
The intimate relationship of partial denture-2
.components with the abutments
.The denture base engages soft tissue undercuts- 3
. Indirect retainers-4
:B-Physiological means
The same physical means of complete denture
retention act on the removable partial denture
. bases and maxillary major connectors

The component that engages an abutment
tooth and in so doing resists dislodging
forces applied to a removable partial
. denture is called direct retainer

:Types of direct retainers

:Intracoronal retainers (internal or precision attachment)-1
It consists of two units ,the first one is a female receptacle in
a crown or inlay in the abutment. The second part is a male
insert attached to the partial denture. The retention is
derived by the frictional fit and wedging action between
the male and female components when a dislodging force
.alters their parallelism
.Elimination of visible retentive and support components-1
Better vertical support than extracoronal retainers. since its -2
location directs the force along the long axis of the tooth.
. 3-Horizontal stabilization to the dentures is provided

Intracoronal retainers

Intracoronal retainers

It require complicated clinical and laboratory-1
.Require prepared abutment and casting-2
Frictional retention is progressively lost because of-3
.its wear
.It is difficult to repair and replace-4
.It is not used in short crowns and large pulp-5
lt requires stress breaker in distal extension cases-7

: II-Extracoronal retainers (clasps)

The clasp is a retainer in which a flexible arm
engages an external surface of an abutment tooth
in an undercut area cervical to the greatest
convexity of the tooth (height of contour)
:Requirements of clasps
All clasps must be designed so that they satisfy the
following six basic requirements:
The retentive clasp arm provides resistance to
. vertical dislodging forces (retention)

:Factors determining the amount of clasp retention

;A-Amount of undercuts
the greater the amount of tooth undercut engaged by the clasp, the greater
.the retention
B- The greater the vertical distance
the retentive clasp terminal is placed in an undercut, the greater will be
. the retention
;C-The flexibility of the clasp arm
as the flexibility of the arm is increased, the retention decreases. The arm
:flexibility depends on
The diameter of the arm; the smaller the diameter of the arm, the greater -1
.the flexibility
.The length of the arm; the longer the arm, the greater the flexibility - 2
The taper of the arm; the greater the taper of the arm, the greater the - 3
The cross-section of the arm; the half round clasp arm is less flexible -4
.than rounded clasp arm, which provides flexibility in all directions
The material of the arm; the chromium cobalt alloy is less flexible than -5
.cast gold alloy, and the wrought wire is more flexible than cast alloys

Rigid portions of clasps (the proximal two thirds of
the retentive clasp arm and the entire length of the
bracing arm) provide resistance to horizontal,
lateral or torsional components of force (stability).
The rest provides resistance to vertical seating forces
The bracing arm provides resistance to horizontal
forces exerted on a tooth by the retentive clasp
terminal during seating and unseating of the
. prosthesis (reciprocation)

Extracoronal circumferential
direct retainer

Adequate encirclement prevents horizontal tooth
movement within the confines of the clasp. This is
achieved by engagement of a greater than 180
degrees (more than half of the tooth
circumference), or a minimum of three widely
.separated points of contact
There should be no active force on the tooth when
the clasp is in place. Its retentive function should
be activated only when a dislodging force is
. applied

I-Occlusally approaching (circumferential or subrabulge)
The retentive clasp arm originates from a minor connector or
proximal plate, usually near the occlusal surface and
.approaches the undercuts from an occlusal direction
II-Gingivallv approaching (bar, roach or infrabulge clasp:
The retentive arm originates from a major connector or
denture base, passing adjacent to the soft tissues and
.approaching the tooth from a gingival direction
: III- Combination
. Cast clasp arm and wrought wire clasp arm

: Design
The retentive arm flexible terminal engages a measured-1
.undercut in the gingival one third of an abutment crown
The retentive clasp arm terminus should not contact the- 2
free gingival margin and should end at the mesial or distal
.line angle pointing towards the occlusal surface
The stabilization (reciprocation) arm and the proximal two-3
thirds of the retentive arm should be placed no higher than
the middle third of the tooth, preferably at the junction of
.the gingival and middle third
The bracing clasp arm should be slightly thicker than the- 4
. retentive clasp arm to promote rigidity

Cast half-round
circumferential clasp on a

Horizontal arm on molar - it

is rigid, non-flexible, and
placed in a non-retentive area

.l-Provides excellent support, bracing and retention
.It is the easiest clasp to construct and repair- 2
.Causes less food impaction than the bar clasps-3
Covers more tooth surface than the bar clasp, with -1
.more caries susceptibility
The occlusal approach tends to increase the-2
.occlusal table
lt is not esthetically acceptable in anterior region-3
of the mouth
lt can be adjusted in a buccolingual but not in-4
. occIusogingival direction

:l-Circlet (Aker's) clasp
.It is used for the tooth- supported partial dentures
: I-It consists of
.a- A minor connector
.b- Occlusal rest
.C-Cast circumferential retentive clasp arm
.d-Cast circumferential bracing clasp arm
.Engages 0.01 inch undercut-2
. Provides bilateral bracing-3

Reciprocal Arm

Occlusal Rest

Retentive Arm

l-Circlet (Aker's) clasp

The half and half clasp-2

The half and half clasp is a modification of
the circlet clasp with the reciprocal arm
coming from one direction and the retentive
arm from the other. Two rests are used for
this clasp. It is used on molars and
premolars. The retentive tip is placed into a
.0.01 inch undercut

:C-clasp (hairpin clasp)-3

When a distofacial undercut exists. It is rarely
indicated, since its retentive arm covers a
.large amount of tooth structure
:It consists of-1
. b-Minor connector

c-Cast circumferential C- retentive clasp arm;

it crosses the facial surface of the tooth from
its origin then turns back to engage proximal
undercut below its point of origin. d-Cast
.circumferential bracing clasp arm
.lt engage 0.01 inch undercut-2
.Provides bilateral bracing-3
.It covers considerable tooth surface-1
Display too much metal-2
. Its flexibility is limited-3

C-clasp (hairpin clasp- fish hook)

The reverse circlet clasp-3

The reverse circlet clasp is used when the
retentive undercut is located on the surface
of the abutment tooth adjacent to the
.edentulous space
It is indicated in class I & class II distal
extension partial dentures where deep tissue
undercut precludes the use of infrabulge

:Embrasure clasp-4
.For unmodified class II and class III. in the side were no tooth missing
It is essentially two circlet clasps originating from common -1
: minor connector, therefore it is composed of
a-Two occlusal rests: Rests are used to provide support and avoid
interproximal wedging and food impaction. Enough preparation for
the occlusal rests and extension of the preparation to the marginal
ridge buccolingual to accommodate the clasp arms is necessary. Teeth
.interproximal contact should be maintained during this preparation
.b-One minor connector
.c- Two cast circumferential retentive clasp arms
.d- Two circumferential bracing clasp arms
.Provides bilateral bracing- 2
. Utilizes 0.01 inch undercut-3

Embrasure clasp

: Multiple Aker's clasp-4

In tooth borne RPD when additional-1
.retention and bracing are needed
May be used instead of embrasure clasp-2
when the undercut areas are adjacent to
.each other
It is two opposing circlet clasps joined at the
terminal end of the reciprocal arms

Used in tooth mucosa borne partial dentures
where an RPIclasp cannot be used because
of bar clasp arm contraindications

: I-It consists of
.a-Mesial occlusal rest
b- Minor connector, placed into the mesiolingual embrasure, but not
.contacting the adjacent tooth
c- Proximal plate: A distal guiding plane extending from the marginal
ridge to the junction of the middle and gingival third of the abutment
is prepared to receive proximal plate. The proximal plate contacts only
.1 mm of the gingival portion of the guiding plane
d- Cast circumferential retentive clasp arm; arises from the proximal plate
and engages mesiobuccal undercut. The shoulder of the retentive arm
contacts the tooth at the height of contour at the junction of the middle
.and gingival third of the tooth
Upon function the proximal plate and the retentive tip move - 2
mesiogingivally into a deeper undercut to decrease stresses falling
.upon the abutment
.It engage 0.01 inch undercut-2
. Provides bilateral bracing-3

: Ring clasp-7
. In tilted single standing posterior molar

:Its component parts are-1
a- Rest (s): The main occlusal rest is placed on the mesial marginal ridge
and an auxiliary rest may be placed on the opposite marginal ridge to
.prevent further movement of the mesially inclined tooth
.b Minor connector
c-A single cast circumferential retentive clasp arm which encircles nearly
.the entire circumference of the tooth
On mandibular molar the clasp arm begins on the mesiobuccal surface *
. and terminates in an undercut area on the mesiolingual surface
On the maxillary molar the direction of clasp is reverse; it begins at the *
.mesiolingual surface and terminates on the mesiobuccal surface
d- Reinforcing strut arm for retentive clasp arm; provides rigidity to the
clasp arm on the non retentive side. This rigidity is necessary for
.reciprocation and stabilization
.Engages 0.02-0.03 inch undercut-2
.Provides unilateral bracing-3
. It covers too much tooth surface-4

Ring clasp


.The approach arm of the bar clasp must never impinge on soft tissue -1
.The tissue surface of the approach arm should be smooth and polished with no relief provided - 2
.The approach arm should taper uniformly- 3
. The vertical portion of the approach arm should cross the gingival margin at 90 degree angle - 4
The distance between the vertical projection arm and other vertical component should be at least - 5
. 5 mm
.Greater retention than occlusally approaching clasps due to the trip action -1
.It is more esthetic than the occlusally approaching clasps -2
.The flexibility of the bar clasp arm can be controlled by its taper and length -3
.Covers less tooth structure than the occlusally approaching clasp (less caries susceptibility) -4
Greater tendency to collect and hold food debris (more gingival irritation) than the occlusally -1
.approaching clasp
. The retentive arm does not contribute to bracing and stability- 2

l-When a deep cervical tooth undercut exists.
.2- When a severe tissue undercut exists
.When there is a shallow vestibule - 3
When there is excessive buccal or lingual - 4
.tilt of the tooth
When the height of contour is close to the - 5
. occlusal surface of the tooth


I-Bar clasp (Roach or vertical projection):
I-On abutment for tooth supported or toothmucosa supported RPD when there is
.distobuccal undercut
.In situations in which esthetics is important -2

Component parts: It is usually used as a-1
:combination clasp from
.b-Minor connector
.C A cast bar retentive clasp arm
.d- A cast circumferential bracing clasp arm
.Provides unilateral bracing-2
.Engages 0.0 I inch undercut -3
The shape of the retentive terminal as a T,-4
. modified T, Y, or I classify the bar clasp
a-The I and Y retentive clasp arms provide tripping
. action, which is called push type clasp

b- The T and modified T clasps did not have

tripping action, since the retentive terminal
actually engage the undercut from an
occlusal direction. One terminal of the T
-bar clasp lies above the survey line for
bracing and the other terminal below the
survey line for retention. The modified Tbar clasp has only one terminal below the
. survey line

.Commonly used for tooth mucosa borne partial dentures
: It consists of-1
.a-Mesial rest
b-Minor connector, placed into the mesiolingual embrasure, but not
.contacting the adjacent tooth
c-Proximal plate contacts approximately 1 mm of the gingival portion of
.guiding plane
d-Cast I bar retentive clasp arm located at the mesiobuccal prominence of
.the tooth or mesial to it
.Engages 0.01 inch undercut-2
.Provides unilateral bracing-3
The proximal plate and the minor connector provide stabilization and - 4
During function, proximal plate and I-bar clasp arm move in a -5
mesiogingival direction-disengaging tooth. This distributes more
. functional load to edentulous ridge

III- Combination Clasp

: Indication
Commonly used for tooth mucosa borne RPD, when there is mesiobuccal
.undercut on the abutment tooth
:Cornponent parts are-1
a- Rest
b- Minor connector
.c- Wrought wire circumferential retentive clasp arm
.d-Cast circumferential bracing clasp arm
.Engages 0.01- 0.02 inch undercut-2
. Provides bilateral bracing, but less than a cast circumferential clasp -3

.Greater flexibility - 1
It is more esthetically acceptable because it is placed too -2
.much gingival
lt flex in all directions (round in cross section), which allow-3
.it to dissipate forces exerted on the abutment tooth
.The retentive arm can be adjusted in all directions- 4
Makes little tooth contact (line contact. rather than the -5
.surface contact of the cast clasp arm)
It is easily distorted or fractured by careless handling by -1
.the patient
It does not possess the bracing and stabilizing qualities of -2
.cast clasp arm
It involves extra step in fabrication-3

Remote soldered or
laser welded

Wrought wire (19 ga.) clasp soldered to

framework on a premolar

Criteria for clasp selection

The selection of the clasp depends mainly on the type of
.support, the presence of undercut areas, and esthetics
For bounded saddle; the retentive undercut present is used-1
with any acceptable clasp type (clasping for convenience),
2-For distal extension base; a stress releasing clasp that
equitably distribute the force between the abutment and the
: ridge is used
a-If a mesiobuccal undercut is available on the terminal
abutment, a combination clasp with the wrought wire, RPI,
.or RPA clasps are used
b-If the retentive undercut is located on the distobuccal
surface, a bar clasp, reverse circlet (the minor connector
and the occlusal rests are placed mesially) and the C-clasp
.are used
c-If mesiolingual undercut is present a wrought wire clasp is
. used