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Vol. 68, No. 2
ISSN: 1488-2159
February 2002


Outcomes of Implant Prosthodontic Treatment in Older Adults


• S. Ross Bryant, BSc, DDS, MSc, PhD, FRCD(C) •
• George A. Zarb, BChD, DDS, MS, MS, FRCD(C) •

A b s t r a c t

Older adults are expected to account for an increasingly disproportionate number of individuals needing oral implant prostheses. However, this biotechnology was initially studied for predominantly middle-aged edentulous patients, not elderly people. High rates of success and minimal crestal bone loss have been reported for oral implants mainly in this group. The results of studies at the University of Toronto now clearly support earlier reports that older adults respond to oral implants in the same manner as younger adults, despite their tendency for systemic illness, including osteoporosis. However, unfavourable jawbone quantity and quality, particularly atrophy of the maxilla, impaired implant success. Furthermore, placement of implants in sites that had been edentulous for shorter periods was associated with greater crestal bone loss, a finding that may have implications for younger adults undergoing such treatment. The major decision-making challenge in managing depleted dentitions and complete edentulism in an aging society now lies in differentiating the treatment outcomes, especially patient-mediated assessments (including economic analyses), of the various prosthodontic options available for older adults.


MeSH Key Words: aging/physiology; dental implants; osseointegration; dental prosthesis, implant-supported
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