Purpose: The purpose of this follow-up study was to quantify the change in the peri-implant mucosal level after treatment of edentulous patients with fixed prostheses on osseointegrated endosseous implants.
Materials and methods: Twenty patients were included in the study: 10 were treated in the maxilla, and 10 were treated in the mandible. Both groups had fixed prostheses on osseointegrated Brånemark implants. Peri-implant mucosal level was measured with a calibrated probe after removal of the prostheses at the 1-year follow-up. These measurements were compared to those made on the original master casts.
Results: A larger mean retraction (-) was observed in the mandible (-1.6 mm) compared to the maxilla (-0.8 mm), but there was great variation. The individual values varied from -4.5 to +1.0 mm in the mandible and from -6.0 to +6.0 mm in the maxilla.
Conclusion: Peri-implant soft tissue recession occurs during the first year in edentulous jaws after treatment with implant-supported fixed prostheses and more so in the maxilla than the mandible.