Partial lateralization of the nasopalatine nerve at the incisive foramen for ridge augmentation in the anterior maxilla prior to placement of dental implants: a retrospective case series evaluating self-reported data and neurosensory testing

Int J Periodontics Restorative Dent. 2015 Mar-Apr;35(2):169-77. doi: 10.11607/prd.2168.


The objective of this study was to assess implant therapy after a staged guided bone regeneration procedure in the anterior maxilla by lateralization of the nasopalatine nerve and vessel bundle. Neurosensory function following augmentative procedures and implant placement, assessed using a standardized questionnaire and clinical examination, were the primary outcome variables measured. This retrospective study included patients with a bone defect in the anterior maxilla in need of horizontal and/or vertical ridge augmentation prior to dental implant placement. The surgical sites were allowed to heal for at least 6 months before placement of dental implants. All patients received fixed implant-supported restorations and entered into a tightly scheduled maintenance program. In addition to the maintenance program, patients were recalled for a clinical examination and to fill out a questionnaire to assess any changes in the neurosensory function of the nasopalatine nerve at least 6 months after function. Twenty patients were included in the study from February 2001 to December 2010. They received a total of 51 implants after augmentation of the alveolar crest and lateralization of the nasopalatine nerve. The follow-up examination for questionnaire and neurosensory assessment was scheduled after a mean period of 4.18 years of function. None of the patients examined reported any pain, they did not have less or an altered sensation, and they did not experience a "foreign body" feeling in the area of surgery. Overall, 6 patients out of 20 (30%) showed palatal sensibility alterations of the soft tissues in the region of the maxillary canines and incisors resulting in a risk for a neurosensory change of 0.45 mucosal teeth regions per patient after ridge augmentation with lateralization of the nasopalatine nerve. Regeneration of bone defects in the anterior maxilla by horizontal and/or vertical ridge augmentation and lateralization of the nasopalatine nerve prior to dental implant placement is a predictable surgical technique. Whether or not there were clinically measurable impairments of neurosensory function, the patients did not report them or were not bothered by them.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alveolar Ridge Augmentation*
  • Dental Implants*
  • Facial Nerve / surgery*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Palate / innervation*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Young Adult


  • Dental Implants