by Emanuele Tamburini (Italy)

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Classification: Treatment, Extraction , Socket & Ridge preservation, Events, Symposia / Congresses
Objectives: The objective was to simplify the regenerative procedure using a minimally invasive technique. Ridge preservation at the time of the patient’s tooth avulsion was not possible because of acute infection. Surgery was performed using biomaterials during the early post-extractive healing process. The "early build-up technique", as used in healthy patients, was chosen to reduce comorbidity risks in a single high-risk patient.
Methods: A 69-year-old woman had been treated with oral alendronate 70 mg weekly since 2001 because of a vertebral fracture caused by osteoporosis. She had experienced in anamnesis breast neoplasm in 2000 (and recurrence in 2015) and myocardial infarction for which she had a triple bypass in 2007 and angioplasty in 2014. The patient attended the clinic for chronic periodontitis and the tooth 4.7 was extracted because of recurrent periodontal abscesses. Before the extraction, cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) allowed evaluation of cortical wall thickness around the mobile mesial inclined 4.7 from the most significant eight cross sections (CS), and 16-mm mesiodistal bone assessment. The edentulous area 4.6 was partially included in the evaluation. Photographs were taken and periodontal probing performed 2 months after extraction of 4.7. The surgical protocol involved flapless avulsion of the tooth in October 2011 and the flap procedure 2 months later (December 2011). The early alveolar build-up was performed using bovine-derived xenograft and collagen matrix. The surgical design was restricted to keratinised gingiva 4.6–4.7. The intra-alveolar connective tissue of the thick vestibular flap was preserved and rotated on the second layer of the matrix to protect the wound. The exposed surface of the matrix resembled geometrically a post-extract alveolus and flap suture was performed without periosteal-releasing incisions to guide soft tissue proliferation (GGP; guided gingival proliferation).
Results: No complications were reported after surgery. The exposed matrix surface was part of the GGP procedure. As in healthy patients, the exposed biomaterial surface was sealed after 4 weeks. The gain in keratinised gingiva was 2mm. The hard tissue outcome was detected by 16-mm mesiodistal CBCT changes before the extraction and after surgery. Before the extraction, the bone crest width in the distal area 4.7 was 6 mm in two cross-sections and 8–9 mm in three mesial cross sections (area missing 4.6). Near the roots in 4.7 in three central cross-sections, there was only 1 mm of lingual cortical wall with fenestration defects (1 CS) and vestibular bone was largely absent (>50%). The alveolar cavity was partially retentive. After lateral ridge regeneration the bone crest width was 10–12 mm in seven cross-sections, with the greatest linear horizontal bone gain (of 10 mm) in four central cross-sections. The lingual osseous fenestration was healed. Overall the lingual bone plate height in distal area 4.7 was decreased by 1–2 mm (three distal cross-sections), with no differences in central and mesial areas (five sections). The vestibular cortical wall height was 2–5 mm greater in the central and distal area 4.7 (six cross-sections), with no differences in the mesial area (two cross-sections). The vertical distance between bone crest and alveolar nerve level was 8–9 mm in all cross sections, without residual defect area. After 4 years of follow-up the 4.7 site is in a stable condition according to ortopantomography and photographs.
Conclusions: In healthy patients, this surgical augmentation of horizontal alveolar bone and keratinised gingiva is problem-free, and was shown to be the case also in this high-risk patient, in whom implant surgery is contraindicated because of comorbid conditions and uncontrolled periodontitis. In healthy patients, implant insertion is possible 6–12 months after bone augmentation. The choice of the GGP protocol for this alendronate-treated patient was associated with fewer risks than surgery with primary intention healing of the wound. Further clinical trials should be conducted on the GGP protocol, and may show that covering bone substitutes with collagen matrix exposed during the early post-extractive wound healing process is a surgical step instead of a complication of the GBR procedure.
Osteology Foundation
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Osteology Foundation