Aim: One-piece ceramic implants (O-PCIs) have proven to be clinically useful, with high survival rates. The biocompatibility and bio-inert characteristics of ceramics in addition to the fact that minimal plaque deposits occur on these materials provide esthetic advantages and justification for their use in the anterior maxilla. The objective of the present study was to investigate the suitability of O-PCI use in the anterior maxilla.
Materials and methods: The data of patients who had received conventional two-piece titanium implants were analyzed. Virtual planning was performed to determine whether O-PCIs could have been used. Three groups were formed: single-tooth gap (group A); multiple-tooth gap treated with two implants (group B); and complex treatments with at least three implants (group C). In addition to assessing the feasibility of O-PCIs, their usefulness as well as additional procedures such as augmentation and a change in the implant quantity or position were evaluated. Values of the location of the virtual cementation line were summarized for all cases.
Results: Without additional procedures, O-PCIs could be used in 97.9% of group A, 77.3% of group B, and 59.1% of group C. For group B, 18.2% of the cases could have been managed with additional augmentation. For the complex cases (group C), 18.2% of the patients would have been treatable if the planning had been altered, augmentation had been performed or implants with an inclined abutment had been available. The mean value of the lowest point of the cementation line was 2.9 mm (standard deviation 1.23; 0.0 to 7.2 mm).
Conclusion: O-PCIs can be used in the anterior maxilla with planning. The esthetic advantages of ceramics can be leveraged for this part of the mouth, especially for single-tooth gaps.
Keywords: ceramic implant; digital treatment simulation; maxillary; one-piece implant; zirconia; dental implant.