Aim: The aim of this retrospective study is to assess the long-term buccal bone plate changes in cases of single implants in the maxillary aesthetic area placed and restored immediately after extraction.
Material and Methods: A private practice's database was reviewed to find patients who had a standard computed tomography (CT) scan taken no more than 24 hours after insertion of a single, immediately restored, postextractive implant in the anterior maxilla. After a minimum period of 7 years, a cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) was performed. Buccal bone plate measurements were performed on CT and CBCT Dicom images and in vivo records.
Results: Two thousand nine hundred eighty patient records were scanned. Sixteen of them met the primary inclusion criteria. Three CTs were excluded because of poor imaging. Thirteen patients were then eligible to be recalled and 12 of them agreed to a follow-up. One implant failed due to severe periimplantitis. The resulting 11 patients were scanned by CBCT. Vertical mean resorption of 0.5 mm at buccal aspect and an average of 0.9-mm thick buccal bone plate was revealed. In 2 patients (18.18%), the bone peak resorbed under the level of the implant shoulder.
Conclusion: The buccal bone plate of single implants placed and restored immediately after tooth extraction in the maxillary aesthetic areas was subjected to a moderate vertical and horizontal reabsorption 7 years after surgery. If a careful selection of the patient and strict clinical protocol are observed, the immediate placement of a single implant in a fresh extraction socket and its immediate restoration do not compromise the preservation of the buccal bone plate.
*Private Practice, Via Spina, Bologna, Italy.
†Full Professor of Oral Pathology, Dental School, University of Chieti, Via F. Sciucchi, Chieti, Italy.
Reprint requests and correspondence to: Prof Adriano Piattelli, MD, DDS, Via F. Sciucchi 63, 66100 Chieti, Italy, Fax: 011-39-0871-3554076, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org