Over a period of time, the jawbone associated with missing teeth atrophies or is reabsorbed. This often leaves a condition in which there is poor quality and quantity of bone suitable for placement of dental implants. In these situations, most patients are not candidates for placement of dental implants.
Today, we have the ability to grow bone where needed. This not only gives us the opportunity to place implants of proper length and width, it also gives us a chance to restore functionality and aesthetic appearance.
Bone grafting can repair dental implant sites with inadequate bone structure due to previous extractions, gum disease or injuries. The bone is either obtained from a human donor, from cow bone or your own bone (lower or upper jaw).Sometimes Dr. Alvarenga likes to use a combination of bone sources. Often, collagen membranes are used to cover and protect the bone graft during healing. thes emembranes dissolve on their own. All of this is called Guided Bone Regeneration.
Major bone grafts are typically performed to repair defects of the jaws. These defects may arise as a result of traumatic injuries, tumor surgery, or congenital defects. Large defects are repaired using the patient’s own bone. This bone is harvested from a number of different sites depending on the size of the defect. The skull (cranium), hip (iliac crest), and lateral knee (tibia), are common donor sites. These procedures are routinely performed in an operating room and require a hospital stay. If the site requiring grafting is overly extensive, Dr. Alvarenga may refer you to an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon.