Background: Approximately one-third of Americans older than 65 years of age are fully edentulous, requiring replacement of missing teeth. While the conventional denture may meet the needs of many patients, others require more retention, stability, function and esthetics, especially in the mandible. The implant-supported prosthesis is an alternative to the conventional removable denture.
Methods: This article describes the strengths of the implant-supported mandibular overdenture. The authors also outline the risks of this approach. They performed a review of recent literature to summarize the reported success rate of implants used to support a mandibular overdenture.
Results: The literature review indicates that implants placed in the anterior mandible (anterior to the foramen) have a success rate better than 95 percent. Patients have reported a high degree of satisfaction with the implant-supported overdenture.
Conclusions: The literature indicates that implant-supported overdentures in the mandible provide predictable results with improved stability, retention, function and patient satisfaction compared with conventional dentures. Implants placed in the anterior mandible have a success rate equal to or greater than 95 percent.
Clinical implications: When planning treatment for patients with edentulous mandibles, clinicians should consider the implant-supported prosthesis.