Implant surgery and bone regeneration
Implant surgery is the branch of dentistry that aims to anchor a prosthesis to the patient’s bone through the placement of endosseous osseointegrated implants if dental support is not available because teeth are missing or, if present, are not fit to the purpose.
Most implants used nowadays are titanium screws. They feature threads and a microporous surface. On the 8-12 weeks following their placement in the patient’s bone, their osseointegration occurs: bone tissue grows into their microporous surface and creates an extremely strong bond with the implants themselves.
Implants must be placed in the proper spatial tridimensional position according to the prosthetic plan. Each must be surrounded completely by a bone layer, whose thickness shall not be smaller than 1.5-2 mm.
This last condition cannot always be satisfied since sometimes bone loss is observed due to the fact some teeth are missing. Bone regenerative surgery aims to restore a proper bone volume, permitting the implant placement and its survival over time. Bone regeneration surgery can be performed following different approaches.
Materials used can vary from the patient’s own bone (autogenous bone) to bone substitutes (manufactured through industrial processes), membranes and titanium grids. These procedures are highly specialized and, when performed by a skilled expert, they allow bypassing the problem of bone atrophy.
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