Titanium mesh as an alternative to a membrane for ridge augmentation

J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 2012 Apr;70(4):803-10. doi: 10.1016/j.joms.2011.11.017. Epub 2012 Jan 28.


Purpose: The purpose of the present study was to determine the rate and extent of complications associated with using titanium mesh for bone regeneration and to identify which factors might be associated with postoperative complications, such as infection, soft tissue exposure, and graft failure.

Materials and methods: A retrospective study design was used to analyze the treatment outcomes of 27 consecutive surgical sites in the maxilla and mandible that were treated with bone grafting in conjunction with fixation of titanium mesh. The primary study variable was whether the surgical sites treated with titanium mesh presented with any postoperative complications such as exposure of the titanium mesh and/or graft failure. A secondary study variable was whether treatment with bone grafting and fixation of titanium mesh provided the necessary bone augmentation required for subsequent dental implant placement. The predictor variables of maxillary versus mandibular surgical site and the type of bone graft material used were studied to determine whether any relationship exists between these variables and the aforementioned postoperative complications.

Results: A total of 27 consecutive sites in the maxilla and mandible that required substantial bone augmentation and were treated with titanium mesh were evaluated for 6 to 24 months after surgical treatment. Exposure of titanium mesh was seen in 7 (26%) of the 27 surgical sites evaluated. No significant difference in the exposure rate was seen between the maxilla and mandible or according to the type of graft material used. All 69 implants placed were in function, and the success rate was 100%.

Conclusions: The findings from the present study indicate that substantial bone augmentation can be achieved using titanium mesh in conjunction with bone grafting. Furthermore, exposure of titanium mesh during healing does not necessarily compromise the final treatment outcome.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Alveolar Ridge Augmentation / instrumentation*
  • Biocompatible Materials* / chemistry
  • Bone Regeneration / physiology
  • Bone Substitutes / therapeutic use
  • Bone Transplantation / methods
  • Dental Implants
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Graft Survival
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mandible / surgery
  • Maxilla / surgery
  • Membranes, Artificial*
  • Middle Aged
  • Postoperative Complications
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Surgical Mesh*
  • Surgical Wound Dehiscence / etiology
  • Surgical Wound Infection / etiology
  • Titanium* / chemistry
  • Transplantation, Autologous
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Biocompatible Materials
  • Bone Substitutes
  • Dental Implants
  • Membranes, Artificial
  • Titanium