Which hard tissue augmentation techniques are the most successful in furnishing bony support for implant placement?

Tara L Aghaloo, Peter K Moy
International Journal of Oral & Maxillofacial Implants 2007, 22 Suppl: 49-70

PURPOSE: A variety of techniques and materials have been used to establish the structural base of osseous tissue for supporting dental implants. The aim of this systematic review was to identify the most successful technique(s) to provide the necessary alveolar bone to place a dental implant and support long-term survival.

METHODS: A systematic online review of a main database and manual search of relevant articles from refereed journals were performed between 1980 and 2005. Updates and additions were made from September 2004 to May 2005. The hard tissue augmentation techniques were separated into 2 anatomic sites, the maxillary sinus and alveolar ridge. Within the alveolar ridge augmentation technique, different surgical approaches were identified and categorized, including guided bone regeneration (GBR), onlay/veneer grafting (OVG), combinations of onlay, veneer, interpositional inlay grafting (COG), distraction osteogenesis (DO), ridge splitting (RS), free and vascularized autografts for discontinuity defects (DD), mandibular interpositional grafting (MI), and socket preservation (SP). All identified articles were evaluated and screened by 2 independent reviewers to meet strict inclusion criteria. Articles meeting the inclusion criteria were further evaluated for data extraction. The initial search identified a total of 526 articles from the electronic database and manual search. Of these, 335 articles met the inclusion criteria after a review of the titles and abstracts. From the 335 articles, further review of the full text of the articles produced 90 articles that provided sufficient data for extraction and analysis.

RESULTS: For the maxillary sinus grafting (SG) technique, the results showed a total of 5,128 implants placed, with follow-up times ranging from 12 to 102 months. Implant survival was 92% for implants placed into autogenous and autogenous/composite grafts, 93.3% for implants placed into allogeneic/nonautogenous composite grafts, 81% for implants placed into alloplast and alloplast/xenograft materials, and 95.6% for implants placed into xenograft materials alone. For alveolar ridge augmentation, a total of 2,620 implants were placed, with follow-up ranging from 5 to 74 months. The implant survival rate was 95.5% for GBR, 90.4% for OVG, 94.7% for DO, and 83.8% for COG. Other techniques, such as DD, RS, SP, and MI, were difficult to analyze because of the small sample size and data heterogeneity within and across studies.

CONCLUSIONS: The maxillary sinus augmentation procedure has been well documented, and the long-term clinical success/survival (> 5 years) of implants placed, regardless of graft material(s) used, compares favorably to implants placed conventionally, with no grafting procedure, as reported in other systematic reviews. Alveolar ridge augmentation techniques do not have detailed documentation or long-term follow-up studies, with the exception of GBR. However, studies that met the inclusion criteria seemed to be comparable and yielded favorable results in supporting dental implants. The alveolar ridge augmentation procedures may be more technique- and operator-experience-sensitive, and implant survival may be a function of residual bone supporting the dental implant rather than grafted bone. More in-depth, long-term, multicenter studies are required to provide further insight into augmentation procedures to support dental implant survival.

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