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Review Helps Clinicians Understand Dental Implant Complications

Journal of Oral Implantology – Dental implants are now a preferable substitute to dentures because they’re more comfortable, stable and functional. Despite these advantages, dental implants can create problems for patients, including a serious inflammatory condition called peri-implantitis that can cause extensive bone loss. A recent study in the current issue of the Journal of Oral Implantology examines current scientific literature to gain a better understanding of peri-implantitis and help clinicians more quickly detect and treat the condition.

Researchers from Temple University conducted a systematic search of scientific journal articles on peri-implantitis and included 33 articles in their study. The researchers collected data from the articles to answer several questions, including what risk factors and microorganisms are associated with peri-implantitis and identify the best diagnostics and treatment options available.

A higher occurrence of peri-implantitis was found among implant patients who were smokers and who had periodontitis, uncontrolled diabetes and cardiovascular disease. The condition was also associated with higher levels of specific cytokines, which are proteins that are important in the functioning of the body’s immune system. Additionally, dental implants serve as a surface where microorganisms can settle and grow. Several bacterial species and viruses such as the Epstein-Barr virus were prevalent in patients with implants who had peri-implantitis. These microorganisms can cause plaque formation and inflammation characteristic of peri-implantitis.

Clinicians now have a concise list of factors that predispose patients with implants to peri-implantitis, and they can closely monitor patients with these risk factors. The authors concluded that after five years post-implant, the risk of peri-implantitis increases, but this issue is alleviated by maintenance programs

“It is important to realize that dental implants require the same care and maintenance as natural teeth, especially in patients with a high risk for peri-implantitis,” said author Dr. Miriam Ting. The authors point out that some surgical and nonsurgical treatments as well as combinations of the two are effective treatments for peri-implantitis. However, no standard treatment for peri-implantitis exists, and the authors were not able to deduce the most effective treatment from the available articles. Furthermore, the current literature uses different definitions of peri-implantitis, making it difficult for clinicians to properly diagnose and treat the condition. Future work is needed to standardize the definition of peri-implantitis, and larger clinical experiments are needed to determine the most effective treatment.

Full text of the article, “Peri-implantitis: A Comprehensive Overview of Systematic Reviews,” Journal of Oral Implantology, Vol. 44, No. 3, 2018, is available here.


About Journal of Oral Implantology
The Journal of Oral Implantology (JOI) is the official publication of the American Academy of Implant Dentistry. It is dedicated to providing valuable information to general dentists, oral surgeons, prosthodontists, periodontists, scientists, clinicians, laboratory owners and technicians, manufacturers, and educators. The JOI distinguishes itself as the first and oldest journal in the world devoted exclusively to implant dentistry.

Media Contact:
Dominique Scanlan 
Allen Press, Inc.
800/627-0326 ext. 226 

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