Objective: This article examines the success of mini-dental implants (MDI'S) by assessing four subjective measures of patient satisfaction for MDI's in the edentulous maxilla and mandible: comfort, retention, chewing ability and speaking ability. Success rates, surgical techniques, and financial advantages of the MDI's are reviewed.
Study design: Thirty consecutive patients received four MDI's between the mental foramen of the mandible from 9/18/2003 to 10/22/2004. Questionnaires were sent to all thirty patients an average of 5 months postoperatively. The patients ranked comfort, retention, chewing ability, and speaking ability from 1 to 10 (1=poor and 10=excellent).
Results: A total of 116 MDI's were placed in 13 months and 113 remain stable for a 97.4% implant success rate. Pre-operatively patients rated their retention at 1.7+/-0.42 and post-operatively at 9.6+/-0.37, for a difference of 7.9 (p=3.6-19). Comfort was the next greatest improvement, with a pre-operative rating of 2.2+/-0.63 and a post-operative rating of 9.4+/-0.45, for a difference of 7.2 (p=3.5-15). Chewing ability also improved, with a difference of 7.0 (p=2.9e-16). In the final category of speaking ability, the pre-operative to post-operative difference was 3.2 (p=1.1e-5).
Conclusion: MDI's are a highly successful implant option for patients with poor tolerance to maxillary and mandibular prosthesis. The implants are relatively affordable and overall patient satisfaction is excellent.