Ridge Augmentation of an Atrophic Maxilla
A 58-year-old male patient presented with a failed fixed partial denture that extended from tooth No. 6 to tooth No. 9. Teeth Nos. 6 and 9 were the abutment teeth, and because of recurrent caries, they had fractured at the gingival margin and were nonrestorable.
At the initial visit, the patient indicated that he wanted to replace his missing teeth with dental implants. Among the many challenges to his case was the severe degree of ridge atrophy that had occurred in the pontic sites (teeth Nos. 7 and 8). Teeth Nos. 7 and 8 were extracted approximately 20 years ago, so the amount of atrophy observed was expected.
The patient indicated that he wanted a fixed prosthesis and esthetics were not a factor. His primary goals were to reestablish comfort and function with a predictable treatment plan that had reasonable longevity.
Based on the patient?s desires, he chose the following surgical treatment plan:
- Extract teeth Nos. 6 and 9 and place bone grafts to preserve the ridge. During the same visit, a ridge augmentation procedure using particulate bone would also be performed.
- After 6 months of healing, implants would be placed in the positions of teeth Nos. 6, 7, and 9.
- Depending on the quality of the newly formed bone, the final restoration would be fabricated 3 to 6 months following implant surgery.
This case highlights the extraction/socket graft/ridge augmentation process.