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Bone Grafting in James Island

Major and Minor Bone Grafting

Talking to patientMissing teeth over a period of time may cause your jaw bone to atrophy, or resorb. This often results in poor quality and quantity of bone suitable for the placement of dental implants, as well as long-term shifting of remaining teeth and changes to facial structure. Most patients, in these situations, are not candidates for dental implants.

Fortunately, today we have the ability to grow bone where it is needed. This not only gives us the opportunity to place implants of proper length and width, but it also gives us a chance to restore functionality and aesthetic appearance.

Bone Grafting Process

Bone grafting repairs implant sites with inadequate bone structure due to previous extractions, gum disease, or injuries. The bone is either obtained from a tissue bank or the patient’s own bone is taken from the jaw, hip, or tibia (below the knee).

Sinus bone grafts are also performed to replace bone in the posterior upper jaw. In addition, special membranes may be used that dissolve under the gum to protect the bone graft, and encourage bone regeneration.

Major bone grafts are typically performed to repair defects of the jaws. These defects may arise as a result of traumatic injuries, tumor surgery, or congenital defects. Large defects are repaired using the patient’s own bone. This bone is harvested from a number of different areas depending on the size needed. The skull (cranium), hip (iliac crest), and lateral knee (tibia) are common donor sites. These procedures are routinely performed in an operating room and require a hospital stay.

  • Autogenous Bone Grafts — also known as autografts, are made from your own bone, taken from somewhere else in the body. Autogenous bone grafts are from the patient, containing living cellular elements to enhance bone growth, and eliminating the risk of rejection of the graft material.
  • Allogenic Bone – or allografts, is dead bone harvested from a cadaver. Unlike autogenous bone, allogenic bone cannot produce new bone on its own. Rather, it serves as a framework, or scaffold, over which bone from the surrounding bony walls can grow to fill the defect or void.
  • Xenogenic Bone – Xenogenic bone is derived from non-living bone of another species, usually a cow. The bone is processed at very high temperatures to avoid the potential for immune rejection and contamination. Like allogenic grafts, xenogenic grafts serve as a framework for bone from the surrounding area to grow and fill the void.

As a substitute to using real bone, many synthetic materials are available as safe and proven alternatives, including

  • Demineralized Bone Matrix (DBM)/Demineralized Freeze-Dried Bone Allograft (DFDBA) — This product is processed allograft bone, containing collagen, proteins, and growth factors extracted from the bone. It is available in the form of powder, putty, chips, or a gel that can be injected through a syringe.
  • Graft Composites — Graft composites consist of other bone graft materials and growth factors to achieve the benefits of a variety of substances. Some combinations may include collagen/ceramic composite, which closely resembles the composition of natural bone, DBM combined with bone marrow cells, which aid in the growth of new bone, or a collagen/ceramic/autograft composite.
  • Bone Morphogenetic Proteins — Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) are proteins naturally produced in the body that promote and regulate bone formation and healing.

Each bone grafting option has its own risks and benefits. Our qualified bone grafting surgeons will determine which type of bone graft material is best suited for the patient’s particular needs.

A sinus lift is a type of bone graft for the sinus cavity. The maxillary sinuses are behind the cheeks and on top of the upper teeth. These sinuses are empty, air-filled spaces. Some of the roots of the natural upper teeth extend up into the maxillary sinuses. When these upper teeth are removed there is often just a thin wall of bone separating the maxillary sinus and the mouth. Dental implants need bone to hold them in place. When the sinus wall is very thin, it is impossible to place dental implants in this bone.

A sinus augmentation is generally performed under intravenous sedative medication by a highly-skilled periodontal surgeon, such as Dr. Blanton, or an oral and maxillofacial surgeon.

If bone loss has occurred due to injury or periodontal disease, a sinus augmentation may raise the sinus floor and allow for new bone formation. A sinus lift is one of the most common bone grafting procedures for patients with bone loss in the upper jaw.

The procedure seeks to grow bone in the floor of the maxillary sinus above the bony ridge of the gum line that anchors the teeth in the upper jaw. This enables dental implants to be placed and secured in the new bone growth.

If enough bone between the upper jaw ridge and the bottom of the sinus is available to sufficiently stabilize the implant, sinus augmentations and implant placement can sometimes be performed as a single procedure. If not, the sinus augmentation is performed first. The graft will have to mature for up to several months, depending upon the type of graft material used. Once the graft has matured, the implants can be placed.

A sinus lift may be necessary if you are

  • Missing more than one tooth in the back of your jaw
  • Missing a significant amount of bone in the back of your jaw
  • Missing teeth due to a birth defect or condition
  • Missing most of the maxillary teeth and require support for dental implants

Find Out More

Contact our office to find out more about bone grafts and whether it’s the right choice for you. Call today.

Bone Grafting James Island, Charleston SC | (843) 795-1111