One of our concerns when placing dental implants is the amount of bone you have to support the implants. Not having enough bone at the implant site doesn’t mean you can’t get implants. In fact, we have multiple options for replacing your teeth with implants. If you’ve lost all your teeth, we could use an implant denture system like All-on-4, which engineers systems to reduce the stress on the individual implants and makes the most of the bone that’s there. But for individual lost teeth, we really have two different options: either do a bone graft to build up the bone, or use a shorter implant that fits inside the current bone structure.
Now a new study shows that both of these approaches have high success rates–they are not statistically different in terms of overall success rates.
Comparing Implant Types
This study is a systematic review. A systematic review is one that looks at previous studies to attempt to track an overall trend that is independent of the way individual studies are run. For this systematic review, researchers were looking at randomized clinical trials, which are considered the gold standard for evidence of the effectiveness of a medical treatment. They included 11 trails, which included 911 implants. Of these, 437 were short implants, and 474 were long implants that were placed after bone graft.
Overall, only 18 of the implants failed (1.97%), 9 of each, corresponding to a 2.06% failure rate for short implants and a 1.90% failure rate for long implants. Statistical analysis showed that these were essentially the same success rate.
The implants weren’t exactly the same. Long implants with bone graft were more likely to have biological complications, while short implants were more likely to have complications related to the crown.
Your Dentist Will Make Appropriate Recommendations
This study follows others that show that many different implant approaches have comparable success rates in general terms. However, the best implant for you depends on your individual situation.
You are not able to evaluate your situation to understand which approach is best for you. That depends on the expertise of your implant dentist.
Choose an Implant Dentist You Can Trust
If you are looking for a dental implant procedure, it’s important to find an implant dentist whose judgment you feel you can trust. At Rice Dentistry, we’ve been serving Orange County from Irvine for over 30 years. We have earned the trust of our patients through our education, our expertise, and our talent.
We’ll evaluate your situation and make a recommendation that is best for you.
If you want a dental implant, but don’t have enough bone, we will consider both short implants and bone graft approaches to get the best results for you. We understand that you might want to avoid a bone graft procedure, but sometimes that’s the best approach for getting good results. Other times, a short implant without a bone graft might be best.