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Lasers Med Sci. 2014 Jul;29(4):1321-8. doi: 10.1007/s10103-013-1299-0. Epub 2013 Mar 15.

Immediate, non-submerged, root-analogue direct laser metal sintering (DLMS) implants: a 1-year prospective study on 15 patients.

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Department of Surgical and Morphological Science, Dental School, University of Varese, Varese, Italy,


This study evaluated the 1-year survival and success rate of root-analogue direct laser metal sintering (DLMS) implants, placed into the extraction sockets of 15 patients. DLMS is a technology which allows solids with complex geometry to be fabricated by annealing metal powder microparticles in a focused laser beam, according to a computer-generated three-dimensional (3D) model; the fabrication process involves the laser-induced fusion of titanium microparticles, in order to build, layer-by-layer, the desired object. Cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) acquisition and 3D image conversion, combined with the DLMS process, allow the fabrication of custom-made, root-analogue implants (RAIs). CBCT images of 15 non-restorable premolars (eight maxilla; seven mandible) were acquired and transformed into 3D models: from these, custom-made, root-analogue DLMS implants with integral abutment were fabricated. Immediately after tooth extraction, the RAIs were placed in the sockets and restored with a single crown. One year after implant placement, clinical and radiographic parameters were assessed: success criteria included absence of pain, suppuration, and exudation; absence of implant mobility and absence of continuous peri-implant radiolucency; distance between the implant shoulder and the first visible bone-to-implant contact <1.5 mm from initial surgery; and absence of prosthetic complications. At the 1-year follow-up, no implants were lost, for a survival rate of 100 %. All implants were stable, with no signs of infection. The good conditions of the peri-implant tissues were confirmed by the radiographic examination, with a mean DIB of 0.7 mm (±0.2). The possibility of fabricating custom-made, RAI DLMS implants opens new interesting horizons for immediate placement of dental implants.

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