Resin samples prepared by compression molding using a poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) denture base material were exposed to radio-frequency (rf) glow discharges to improve the wettability of the material. Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) reflectance, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and contact-angle measurements have been employed to characterize the changes introduced by the glow discharge plasma. FT-IR measurements cannot detect any modification. XPS reveals an increase in the O/C atomic ratio. Contact angles of the plasma-treated samples are always lower when compared with untreated ones. The increased O atomic concentration is attributed to formation of -COH groups on the surface during plasma treatment. The O/C atomic ratio decreases upon heating the samples in vacuum to 100 C for 1-2 min and exposing the samples to liquid CH2 Cl2 for 1-2 min. Exposure to distilled water for prolonged periods causes a slight decrease during the initial 1-20 days but levels off to a constant value up to a period of 60 days. Plasma treatment seems to offer a durable increase in the wettability for these materials left in air or distilled water.
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