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Int J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 1988 Aug;17(4):232-6.

A classification of the edentulous jaws.

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Maxillofacial Unit, Royal Infirmary, Chester, UK.


A classification of the edentulous jaws has been developed based on a randomised cross-sectional study from a sample of 300 dried skulls. It was noted that whilst the shape of the basalar process of the mandible and maxilla remains relatively stable, changes in shape of the alveolar process is highly significant in both the vertical and horizontal axes. In general, the changes of shape of the alveolar process follows a predictable pattern. Such a classification serves to simplify description of the residual ridge and thereby assist communication between clinicians; aid selection of the appropriate surgical prosthodontic technique; offer an objective baseline from which to evaluate and compare different treatment methods; and help in deciding on interceptive techniques to preserve the alveolar process. An awareness of the pattern of resorption that takes place in various parts of the edentulous jaws, enables clinicians to anticipate and avert future problems.

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