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Volume 12 , Issue 5
September/October 1999

Pages 385-390

Implant-Supported Removable Overdentures in the Edentulous Maxilla: Clinical and Technical Aspects


PMID: 10709517

Purpose: The aim of this article is to describe the indication criteria and the treatment planning for a maxillary implant-supported removable overdenture. Prostheses are designed according to the requirements of the bar system and the factors influencing the extension of the prosthesis base. Materials and Methods: The decisive factors in determing whether a bar-retained overdenture prosthesis is indicated should be evaluated during the initial clinical examination and with the helpf of a reformatted computed tomographic (CT) scan that is performed with a radiologic template in place. Titanium markers represent the ideal location of the denture teeth in the diagnostic setup so that the implant position can be selected and the available space for the bar system can be assessed vertically and horizontally. Results: For the overdenture prosthesis that is solely implant supported 6 to 8 implants are placed ideally at a distance of about 10 to 14 mm from center to center. A prefabricated bar system that allows the clips to be inserted between the implants can then be used. When the available bone restricts implant placement to adjacent tooth positions an individually milled bar the includes additional frictional pins and/or retentive elements needs to be planned. The prosthesis design, in particular its buccal and palatal flange extension, is determined during setup try-in, taking into account the patient’s smile line, their need for facial support, and their phonetic requirements. Conclusion: The removable implant-supported overdenture offers flexibility in placing implants in either adjacent tooth positions or with greater distances between them depending on the available bone, as either conventional bar and clip systems or individually milled bars can be used. Adjustment of the buccal prosthesis flange and the palatal prosthesis base is made to fulfill the patient’s requirements concerning esthetics, phonetics, comfort, and function.

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