Major & Minor Bone Grafting
Missing teeth over a period of time can cause your jawbone to atrophy, or resorb. This often results in poor quality and quantity of bone suitable for the placement of dental implants as well as long term shifting of remaining teeth and changes to facial structure. Most patients, in these situations, are not candidates for dental implants.
Fortunately, today we have the ability to grow bone where it is needed. This not only gives us the opportunity to place implants of proper length and width, but it also gives us a chance to restore functionality and aesthetic appearance.
Bone can be obtained from a number of sources. Often pre-processed sterilized bonegrafts from from animal, human, or synthetic sources can be used for most tooth-site augmentations. If you have an religious or personal objection to the use of any of these products, please inform Drs. Gauger and Carlson as well as staff at your consultation visit.
Minor bone grafts from your body (autograft) can come from neighboring tooth sites, the chin, and the back corners of the upper (tuberosity) and lower jaw (ramus). Drs. Gauger and Carlson will review the advantages and disadvantages of graft donor sites and help decide the best option for you.
Major Bone Grafting
Bone grafting can repair implant sites with inadequate bone structure due to previous extractions, gum disease, or injuries. The bone is either obtained from a tissue bank or your own bone is taken from the jaw, hip or tibia (below the knee). Sinus bone grafts are also performed to replace bone in the posterior upper jaw. In addition, special membranes may be utilized that dissolve under the gum to protect the bone graft, as well as encourage bone regeneration. This is called guided bone regeneration, or guided tissue 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 areas depending on the size needed. 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.