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Volume 19 , Issue 1
January/February 2004

Pages 92–99

Clinical Evaluation of Small-Diameter ITI Implants: A Prospective Study

Barbara Zinsli, DMD, Dr Med Dent/Tanja Sägesser, DMD, Dr Med Dent/Ernoe Mericske, DMD, Dr Med Dent/Regina Mericske-Stern, DMD, PhD

PMID: 14982361

Purpose: Dental implants with a reduced diameter are designed for specific clinical situations, such as placement of implants where bone width is narrow or between adjacent teeth that have only a narrow space between them. They are particularly useful when replacing small teeth such as lateral maxillary and mandibular incisors. The aim of the present study was the clinical evaluation of 2-part ITI implants (full-body screws with a 3.3-mm diameter). Materials and Methods: One hundred forty-nine partially or completely edentulous patients received a total of 298 2-part ITI implants over a 10-year period. After a standard healing period (3 to 6 months), the implants were restored with fixed restorations such as single crowns or fixed partial or complete prostheses or overdentures. Complete prosthesis or overdenture in the edentulous jaw was the predominant type of restoration. All patients followed a strict maintenance program, with regular recalls at least once a year. The survival rate of the implants was analyzed, and prosthetic complications were assessed. Results: Three implants were lost during the healing phase on account of peri-implant infection. Two implant body fractures with an osseous length of 8 mm were observed (one after 2 years of observation, the other after 6 years). Four implants exhibited transient peri-implant inflammation that was treated successfully by interceptive therapy. The cumulative 5-year survival rate of the implants was 98.7% (96.6% after 6 years). Prosthetic complications were mostly limited to loose occlusal screws and sore spots caused by the denture base. Discussion: Within the limited observation period, failures of small-diameter implants were infrequent. Prosthetic complications were not dependent on the use of small-diameter implants. Conclusion: The use of 3.3-mm ITI implants appears to be predictable if clinical guidelines are followed and appropriate prosthetic restorations are provided. However, fatigue fracture may occur after a long period of function. INT J ORAL MAXILLOFAC IMPLANTS 2004;19:92–99

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