Bone Grafting & Reconstruction
Minor & Major Bone Grafting
The jawbone associated with missing teeth can lose quality and density over time. This creates a situation where dental implants are impossible. However, bone grafting allows implants to be placed of proper length and width in order to restore functionality and aesthetic appearance.
Bone Grafting Overview
For a brief narrated overview of the bone grafting process, please click the image below. It will launch our flash educational MiniModule in a separate window that may answer some of your questions about bone grafting.
Having trouble? Please make sure you have version 7 of the Flash browser plugin in order to correctly view this presentation. This software is available as a free download.
Major Bone Grafting
Major bone grafts are typically performed to repair defects of the jaws. These defects occur as the result of traumatic injuries, tumor surgery, or congenital defects. Large defects are repaired using the patient’s own bone, which can be harvested from various sites within the body. These procedures are routinely performed in an operating room and require a hospital stay. The major bone graft procedures are referred to as:
Sinus Lift Procedure
A sinus graft or sinus lift graft is a procedure that creates the opportunity for dental implants to be inserted. Often times there is a gap between the roots of upper teeth and the maxillary sinuses. This gap does not allow dental implants to be inserted. The procedure is performed by lifting the sinus membrane and inserting donor bone on the floor of the sinus. After several months of healing, the added bone becomes part of the jaw, and dental implant surgery can be performed.
Ridge expansion is a technique that uses bone graft to restore lost bone dimension. In some cases, the jaw ridge is reabsorbed and becomes too thin to place dental implants. This procedure is performed by literally expanding the height and/or width of the jaw ridge by placing bone graft.
Nerve repositioning is a procedure that allows for the placement of dental implants by moving the inferior alveolar nerve. Typically when teeth are missing in the area of the two back molars of the lower jaw, nerve replacement is necessary for dental implants.
The procedure is performed by removing an outer section of the lower jawbone in order to expose the nerve. The nerve is then isolated and pulled out to the side, while at the same time implants are placed. The bundle is released and placed back over the implants, and bone graft material is used to close the area.
These surgeries are performed in the out-office surgical suite under IV sedation or general anesthesia. After discharge, bed rest is recommended for one day and physical activity is limited for one week.