Background: Peri-implant bone loss seems to occur following implant placement/loading regardless of all the efforts to eliminate it. Several factors, including surgical trauma, biologic width establishment, lack of passive fit of the superstructures, implant-abutment microgap, and occlusal overloading, may increase peri-implant bone loss. Over the years, new interface designs were introduced and clinical studies suggest that internal conical connection and platform shifting may be advantageous for marginal bone preservation.
Purpose: To compare clinical and radiological outcomes of two implant designs with different prosthetic interfaces and neck configurations in a randomized, controlled, split-mouth clinical trial.
Materials and methods: Thirty-four partially edentate patients randomly received at least one internal conical connection with back-tapered collar and platform shifting design or external-hexagon implants with flat-to-flat implant-abutment interface. Primary end point was peri-implant bone level changes at different time points, failures of implants and/or prosthesis, any complications, implant stability quotient (ISQ) values, and periodontal parameters.
Results: No dropout occurred. Marginal bone changes were statistically significantly different with better results for the internal conical connection. No implants and prosthesis failures have been observed, yielding a cumulative survival rate of 100%. A high ISQ value was found for both implants, and no statistically significant difference was found for ISQ mean values between interventions at each time point (p > .05). All implants showed no bleeding on probing and a very slight amount of plaque at the 1-year-in-function visit.
Conclusions: Both implant designs investigated performed similarly in terms of failure rates, providing successful results up to 1 year after loading. The back-tapered neck configuration with conical connection and built-in platform shifting showed statistically lower marginal bone loss than straight neck configuration with flat-to-flat implant-abutment interface and external-hexagonal connection.
Keywords: bone level; bone loss; dental implants; implant-abutment interface; platform shifting.
© 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.