Dental implants are placed into the alveolar bone with the expectation that they will become osseointegrated and that the peri-implant mucosa will heal to the abutment surface and fulfill the primary functions of the periodontal tissues: attachment and protection of the soft tissue and the underlying bone. This requires that the rigid connection between the implant and the surrounding bone functionally replaces the sophisticated suspension via the periodontal ligament and that the structural framework of the peri-implant mucosa matches the architecture of the gingiva. The immediately elicited host site interfacial healing response will be discussed as well as long-term behavior. The role of the implantís surface and its macro- and microscopic design features for osseointegration will be elucidated and the clinical implications explained. In particular, the biodynamics of the cascade of early wound healing, from the first interactions between modified rough implant surfaces, to the inflammatory and proliferating phase, to final osseointegration, will be demonstrated and summarized in an animation video.
Peter Schuepbach, PhD, NATSC, is the chief executive officer of Microphot, a company specializing in histology and visualization services, in Horgen, Switzerland. For more than 20 years, he was head of a histologic group at the Dental Institute at the University of Zurich, where he also lectured on oral biology and pathophysiology as a member of the Faculty of Medicine. Dr Schuepbach is a member of several international organizations and the author of more than 50 scientific publications on implantology, tissue regeneration, cariology, and oral microbiology.
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