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Clin Oral Implants Res. 2009 May;20(5):441-51. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0501.2009.01706.x.

A systematic review of the survival and complication rates of implant supported fixed dental prostheses with cantilever extensions after an observation period of at least 5 years.

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University of Bern, School of Dental Medicine, Bern CH-3010, Switzerland.



The aim of this systematic review was to assess the survival rates of short-span implant-supported cantilever fixed dental prostheses (ICFDPs) and the incidence of technical and biological complications after an observation period of at least 5 years.


An electronic MEDLINE search supplemented by manual searching was conducted to identify prospective or retrospective cohort studies reporting data of at least 5 years on ICFDPs. Five- and 10-year estimates for failure and complication rates were calculated using standard or random-effect Poisson regression analysis.


The five studies eligible for the meta-analysis yielded an estimated 5- and 10-year ICFDP cumulative survival rate of 94.3% [95 percent confidence interval (95% CI): 84.1-98%] and 88.9% (95% CI: 70.8-96.1%), respectively. Five-year estimates for peri-implantitis were 5.4% (95% CI: 2-14.2%) and 9.4% (95% CI: 3.3-25.4%) at implant and prosthesis levels, respectively. Veneer fracture (5-year estimate: 10.3%; 95% CI: 3.9-26.6%) and screw loosening (5-year estimate: 8.2%; 95% CI: 3.9-17%) represented the most common complications, followed by loss of retention (5-year estimate: 5.7%; 95% CI: 1.9-16.5%) and abutment/screw fracture (5-year estimate: 2.1%; 95% CI: 0.9-5.1%). Implant fracture was rare (5-year estimate: 1.3%; 95% CI: 0.2-8.3%); no framework fracture was reported. Radiographic bone level changes did not yield statistically significant differences either at the prosthesis or at the implant levels when comparing ICFDPs with short-span implant-supported end-abutment fixed dental prostheses.


ICFDPs represent a valid treatment modality; no detrimental effects can be expected on bone levels due to the presence of a cantilever extension per se.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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