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Crestal Bone Changes Around Implants With Reduced Abutment Diameter Placed Non-Submerged and at Subcrestal Positions: A 1-Year Radiographic Evaluation

teeth xray


Alan Fetner, DMD

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Background: There is limited information about two-part implants placed in subcrestal positions. The aim of this study is to retrospectively evaluate the 1-year outcome of implants placed non-submerged and in a subcrestal position. Methods: Records of 50 consecutive partially edentulous patients restored with dental implants were reviewed. For each implant, radiographs from the surgical appointment were compared to those from the 1-year follow-up visit and evaluated regarding: 1) the degree of subcrestal positioning of the implant, 2) changes of marginal hard tissue height over time, and 3) if the marginal hard tissue could be detected on the implant platform at the follow-up visit. Results: The overall survival rate from baseline to the last recorded follow-up visit was 100%. At the surgery, the implants were placed, on average, 1.37 mm (mesial) and 1.28mm(distal) subcrestally. The mean marginal loss of hard tissues was 0.11 – 0.30 mm. There were no statistical significant differences regarding the loss of marginal hard tissues between mesial and distal surfaces or the maxilla versus the mandible. There was no statistical significant correlation regarding the degree of subcrestal implant position and loss of marginal mineralized hard tissue (r = 0.15; P >0.05). The mineralized hard tissue on the implant shoulder was found in 69% of the implants at the 1-year follow-up visit. Conclusions: The present study reported a minimal loss of mineralized hard tissue around dental implants placed non-submerged and at subcrestal positions. In addition, these implants had hard tissue healing that extended onto the implant shoulders on most of the observed implants.