Purpose: The purpose of this retrospective study was to present treatment outcome and patient reactions to rehabilitation with implant-supported fixed partial prostheses.
Materials and methods: Eighty-three patients were consecutively treated with implant-supported fixed partial prostheses (Brånemark system) from 1986 to 1995. Seventy-six of these 83 patients were examined (66 maxillary and 31 mandibular prostheses). The mean observation time was 53.9 months. In total, 285 implants were placed. Eleven implants were lost before loading. The first 41 prostheses were removed and the implants examined regarding the criteria for "success" and tightness of the screw joints. Only one implant had lost integration.
Results: The survival rate before and after loading was 96%, which included implants placed in augmented bone. All prostheses were stable at the time of examination. In prostheses with cantilevers (98 implants), 12% of the gold screws and 17% of the abutment screws showed a "not acceptable" loosening, compared to none in the prostheses without cantilevers (17 implants). The difference was not statistically significant. The mean marginal bone loss was 0.4 mm for the first year after prosthesis insertion and less than 0.1 mm per year in the following years. The most frequent prosthesis design was one pontic supported by two implants. Prostheses made in gold acrylic and titanium acrylic had more complications and showed a higher need for repair than metal-ceramic restorations. Patients reacted very positively to the esthetic results and comfort with eating, and were overall satisfied with their prostheses.
Conclusion: Implant-supported fixed partial prostheses seem to have a very good prognosis and are well-accepted by patients.