What is bone grafting?
When teeth are removed or lost as a result of disease, trauma, or circumstance, other issues may also arise from the absence of those teeth. Prime among these complications associated with edentulism or tooth loss is bone resorption. Research indicates that patients can lose as much as 40 percent to 60 percent of their underlying crestal bone within the first couple of years after losing a tooth. This massive loss of underlying bone structure that supports the teeth is a major barrier for implant-based procedures which require a minimum depth and width of healthy jaw bone to be successful. Bone grafting is the solution to the problem of bone resorption.
Bone grafting is the process of replacing missing, deteriorated, or otherwise inadequate bone structures. In dentistry, bone grafting procedures largely affect the jaw bone and are employed to ensure adequate bone depth for a variety of implant-based procedures including individual dental implants and All-on-Four dental implants. In fact, the most common applications for bone grafting involve dental implants.
Do you need a dental implant bone graft procedure?
Patients who are considering dental implants, All-On-Four© dental implants, implant-supported dentures, or other implant-based solutions may require a bone grafting procedure beforehand. For implant-based solutions to succeed, adequate healthy jawbone must first exist to provide a substrate for the implants to embed in and allow osseointegration to occur. Generally speaking, patients who have suffered from edentulism, or tooth loss, may be more likely to require a prerequisite bone grafting operation prior to an implant procedure.
How does the bone grafting process work?
Unlike most tissues within the human body, bone tissue has the ability to completely regenerate given adequate space and scaffolding to direct growth. During the grafting process, the affected area is filled with harvested bone tissue then covered with a semipermeable membrane and left to heal. During the healing process existing bone tissues will eventually grow and replace the graft, effectively regenerating and repairing the affected area.
The standard bone grafting technique is known as Guided Bone Regeneration (GBR). Depending on the needs of the patient, GBR can be executed in either a staged approach before implantation or simultaneously with the dental implants. Osteoblasts, or regenerative bone cells, are either harvested autologously from the patient’s own body, obtained from a bone bank in the form of an allograft, or fabricated entirely from biocompatible, synthetic materials such as hydroxyapatite.
The regenerative recovery process post-operation typically follows a very predictable course of events. Typically, a clot forms inside the graft material within hours after the procedure. Eventually, the clot is absorbed and replaced with granulation tissue packed with newly-formed blood vessels. These vessels transport the necessary nutrients and stem cells capable of differentiating into bone cells which go on to form immature woven bone initially then mature lamellar bone. This entire process can take a few months or more depending on the scope of the operation and the health of the patient.
How long is the recovery process?
Recovery typically takes 3 to 4 months for the bone graft to mature. Patients who require extensive bone grafting may face recovery times as long as six months. In some cases, it is possible for experienced dental or oral surgeons to place implants immediately after the grafting procedure, effectively collapsing two recovery periods into one. However, the availability of this option will depend on a number of factors, including existing facial bone integrity and thickness as well as the stability of the graft itself.
How much does a bone graft cost?
Bone grafting procedures will vary in cost depending on the method selected, the amount of grating required, and the dental or oral surgeon you choose. Grafting procedures involving bone obtained from a bone bank or manufactured synthetically will be considerably cheaper than procedures that involve harvesting the patient’s own bone. Autologous or self-harvested, bone grafting procedures require two procedures: one to harvest the requisite grafting materials from one site on the patient’s body and a second to place that material on to the graft site. Autologous procedures typically cost $2,000 to $3,000 per implant site. Allotransplantation procedures with materials from a bank or operations utilizing synthetic tissue will cost significantly less. Patients can expect to pay around $1,000.
Do you need an expert bone graft procedure executed by our experienced and skilled surgeons? Come to Facial and Oral Surgery Institute for a consultation today and let our world-class staff help you with all your cosmetic and dental needs. Bone graft procedures are just one of the many services we provide our patients. Call our office at 818-805-0557 to schedule a consultation or click the Schedule An Appointment button below.