The purpose of this report is to present a reliable surgical and prosthodontic protocol for immediate loading of implants, allowing patients to receive a fixed implant-supported prosthesis in a matter of hours. The surgical, prosthodontic, and laboratory steps for this protocol of immediate functionally loading the implants are described for the treatment of a 51-year-old woman who presented with a hopeless mandibular dentition and an edentulous maxillary arch. It is possible to decrease the treatment time in successfully restoring the patient’s oral function by means of immediate functional loading of dental implants and immediately placing a fixed implant-supported prosthesis. Compared with the traditional implant protocols, this protocol of a one-visit approach for patient treatment 1) decreases the number of office visits; 2) decreases the treatment time; 3) reduces the patients’ costs; 4) allows the patient to avoid wearing a removable interim prosthesis; and 5) increases the patients’ acceptance of treatment while maintaining predictability in treating mandibular edentulism.
*Assistant Professor of Restorative Dentistry, Department of Restorative Dentistry, University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine, Consultant Prosthodontist Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
†Prosthodontics Intermedica, Institute for Facial Esthetics, Washington, Pennsylvania.
‡Postgraduate student, Drexel University, School of Biomedical Engineering and Science, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
§Prosthodontics Intermedica, Institute for Facial Esthetics, Fort Washington, Pennsylvania; Staff Prosthodontist Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and Lecturer, Department of Prosthodontics, Columbia University School of Dental and Oral Surgery, New York, New York.
Reprint requests and correspondence to:
Vicki C. Petropoulos, DMD, MS
University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine
4001 Spruce Street
Department of Restorative Dentistry
Philadelphia, PA 19104–6003
Phone: (215) 898–8980
Fax: (215) 573–9606