The radiograph on the left illustrates an implant in the lower jaw that did not have bone grafting prior to implant placement. (This was not an actual case-it was simulated on a computer for teaching purposes only). You will notice, if you look carefully, that the upper left corner of the implant is not covered with bone. This is not what we want as a final result. The radiograph on the right is an actual radiograph of the same patient after surgery. This result was achieved by first grafting the bone deficiency and waiting six months for it to mature. An implant was than placed in the bone grafted area and a fantastic result was achieved. The entire length of the implant has bone surrounding it. The orange circle is the nerve that travels through the lower jaw. We never want our implant to violate the nerve. Through thorough pre-operative studies, including a CT scan, we can actually perform the surgery on our computer before going ahead with the actual procedure on the patient. You must always have extensive studying and planning before the surgery is performed. I have been placing implants since 1981 and I still perform each surgery as if its my first one. I take nothing for granted.
Please feel free to email me any questions or comments on what I have written. Gellerdds@aol.com