Why Implant Dentistry Fails
Diagnose Cause and Effect
Dental Implants Gone Bad
Edward Brant, DDS, MS
Long Island Implant Failures
447 Lake Avenue
Saint James, NY 11780
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Dynamics of Dental Implant FailureMost implants placed today are root form implants.
Root form implants problems can be classified as ailing, failing, or failed:
Loosening Implant Failures
Preliminary Diagnosis ASAPAs a general rule, treating any kind of loose tooth symptom shouldn't be delayed any longer than necessary. It is difficult to predict what events will occur or are occuring elsewhere in the dentition.
An implant that feels like it is loosening, rotating or wiggling around could be a sign of an osseointegration failure or an infection issue. Unknowingly this could prove to be disastrous for surrounding tissues.. if indeed the implant itself is loose.
Osseointegration Failure:Unfortunately, a popular cause of implant failure if certain protocols are not followed closely. Optimal integration of the implant device into the jawbone requires an acceptable level of healthy bone (porosity values + ample blood supply), matching of implant size to location in jaw, proper site preparation and suitable bone augmentation (bone grafts) deemed necessary.
Improper implant placement:The implant is placed in an area that is unrestorable. A special trephine drill is available for most major implant systems to remove the implants. The drill is razor thin and fits on the outside of the implant. It is irrigated from the inside. This prevents additional bone loss and the irrigant reduces the overheating of the bone. They are very expensive drills, however they are the "kindest" to the tissue.
Fractured implants:Using the wrong type, size, quantity, position or length of implant, thereby causing over loading, may result in implant failure. To preserve integrity of bone, it is imperative that the fractured implant be removed as atraumatically as possible.
Fractured abutments:The principle concern is to maintain the health of the implant. In some cases the abutment may simply require a new screw. Other cases may necessitate remaking the abutment and/or crown.
Tooth material failures:Often the patient is better served by the use of a compomer or acrylic surface in large prosthetic case rather than using porcelain. The physical properties are more forgiving than hard porcelain. This acts as a shock absorber to reduce the load on the implants.
Bad Implant SummaryUnlike a loose crown or cap, a loose or slipping veneer, poorly fitting denture or partial.... an undiagnosed loose dental implant can become destructive almost immediately, depending upon the cause of the "looseness." Like a tent stake that is firmly hammered into the ground, a few lateral or sideways forces that impact an implant can make the implant device wobble repeatedly, eventually loosening within the bone and then destroying the osseointegration of the implant.
When it is known that the crown and/or abutment is loose and not the implant device (housing), removal of the loose part(s) can prevent potential damage to the osseointegrated implant. In cases where the implant device is indeed loose, the treatment typically consists of replacing the implant device with or without bone graft material.
Emergency DiagnosticsPatients who suspect they have a loose implant restoration or dental implant are welcome to contact our office on an emergency basis to prevent additional damage and/or bone loss.