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Volume 31 , Issue 4
July/August 2016

Pages 855–864

Zirconia Dental Implants: Investigation of Clinical Parameters, Patient Satisfaction, and Microbial Contamination

Jens Holländer, DDS/Jonas Lorenz, DDS/Stefan Stübinger, DMD/Werner Hölscher, DDS/Detlef Heidemann, DDS, PhD/Shahram Ghanaati, DMD, DDS, PhD/Robert Sader, DMD, DDS, PhD

PMID: 27447153
DOI: 10.11607/jomi.4511

Purpose: In recent years, dental implants made from zirconia have been further developed and are considered a reliable treatment method for replacing missing teeth. The aim of this study was to analyze dental implants made from zirconia regarding their clinical performance compared with natural teeth (control). Materials and Methods: One hundred six zirconia implants in 38 adults were analyzed in a clinical study after 1 year of loading. The plaque index (PI), bleeding on probing (BOP), probing pocket depth (PPD), probing attachment level (PAL), and creeping or recession (CR/REC) of the gingiva were detected and compared with natural control teeth (CT). Furthermore, the papilla index (PAP), Periotest values (PTV), microbial colonization of the implant/dental sulcus fluid, and patient satisfaction were assessed. Results: The survival rate was 100%. No statistical significance was observed between implants and teeth regarding BOP, PPD, and PAL. A statistical significance was detected regarding PI and CR/REC with significantly less plaque accumulation and recession in the study group. Mean PAP was 1.76 ± 0.55, whereas the mean PTV was –1.31 ± 2.24 (range from –5 to +6). A non–statistically significant higher colonization of periodontitis/peri-implantitis bacteria was observed in the implant group. The questionnaire showed that the majority of the patients were satisfied with the overall treatment. Conclusion: One-piece zirconia dental implants exhibited similar clinical results (BOP, PPD, and PAL) compared with natural teeth in regard to adhesion of plaque (PI) and creeping attachment (CR/REC); zirconia implants performed even better. The favorable results for PAL and CR/REC reflect the comparable low affinity of zirconia for plaque adhesion. Patient satisfaction indicated a high level of acceptance for zirconia implants. However, a long-term follow-up is needed to support these findings.

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