Int J Periodontics Restorative Dent 35 (2015), No. 1 5. Jan. 2015
Various designs of dental implants representing different geometries and surface technologies are commercially available for patient treatment. However, data with regard to the biologic events that occur immediately after implant placement, regardless of the surface characteristic, are scarce. It has become a common procedure to perform immediate/early prosthetic loading rather than delayed loading. The goal of this study was to observe the early biologic events of peri-implant healing to understand the role of surface modifications in relation to the early phases of bone integration. The secondary goal was to observe the possible differences in the healing pattern at two oral implant surfaces differing in morphology and roughness (Ra), with Ra values ranging from 0.5 μm (machined surface; MS) to 1.5 μm (oxidized surface; OS). A total of 36 implants were placed in six foxhound dogs, equally divided between machined and oxidized surfaces. Three implants were positioned per hemimandible following a randomization scheme. Each animal was euthanized at a specific time point for histologic observation and histomorphometry: immediately after implant insertion and after 24 hours, 7 days, 15 days, 30 days, and 90 days. The study demonstrated an extremely low bone-implant contact (BIC) for both OS and MS implant surfaces during the first 15 days after implant placement (ranging from 12.9% to 26.9% independent of the implant surface). Increased BIC values were observed only in the 30- and 90-day specimens. The presence and the degradation of residual bone particles acted as centers for new bone formation, with osteoblasts lining osteoid tissue and subsequently woven bone independent of the implant surface characteristics. The bone-forming activity appeared strongly reduced after 30 days of healing and seemed to be complete only in the 90-day specimens, where abundant lamellar bone was evident. There is a continuing effort to develop improved titanium surfaces to achieve more rapid osseointegration and improve BIC, with the ultimate goal of applying occlusal load as early as possible. Since immediate or early implant loading is applied during and not after the first 15 days, the findings in the present study of an extremely low BIC and limited mineralized bone formation for both implant surfaces during the first 15 days after implant placement suggest that the surface roughness may not be a key factor for successful osseointegration of immediately or early loaded implants. Within the limits of this study, it can be stated that osseointegration follows a similar healing pattern with machined and oxidized implant surfaces.