Semipermanent replacement of missing maxillary lateral incisors by mini-implant retained pontics: A follow-up study
Agenesis of maxillary lateral incisors can be treated either by closing the space and substituting the canines for the missing lateral incisors or, in adults, by replacing the missing teeth with fixed prosthetics or implants. This article illustrates a method that can be used for a semipermanent implant replacement of the missing incisors in adult patients. An Aarhus mini-implant was inserted perpendicular to the palatal mucosa of the alveolar process of the edentulous area. A pontic was made at chair side of composite material around a stainless steel wire extending from the mini-implant. This replacement approach allowed for the vertical development of the alveolar process and maintained the bone density and morphology of the alveolar process. Five years after placement, periapical radiographs showed that the alveolar process was following the vertical development related to the eruption of the adjacent teeth, and that the morphology and the bone density were maintained, making the later insertion of a dental implant possible without additional surgical buildup.