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J Periodontol. 2014 Jun;85(6):787-94. doi: 10.1902/jop.2013.130193. Epub 2013 Oct 30.

A retrospective evaluation of the survival rates of splinted and non-splinted short dental implants in posterior partially edentulous jaws.

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Department of Implantology, São Leopoldo Mandic Institute and Research Center, Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil.



The aim of the present study is to evaluate the survival rate and bone loss around short implants (≤10 mm) supporting splinted or non-splinted posterior prostheses during a follow-up period of 3 to 16 years.


A total of 453 implants from 198 patients was divided into splinted or non-splinted groups. Implant survival rate was calculated for each group, and potential risk was represented as odds ratio (OR). The final linear distance from implant platform level to the first bone-to-implant contact was compared to this same reference just after loading by digital periapical radiographs to determine the marginal bone loss (BL).


The splinted group comprised 219 implants in 86 patients, whereas the non-splinted group included 234 implants from 112 patients. The mean follow-up period was 9.7 ± 3.7 years. Although different success rates were found for splinted (97.7%) and non-splinted (93.2%) groups, they exhibited similar BL (1.22 ± 0.95 mm and 1.27 ± 1.15 mm, respectively). The success of splinted implants was associated with no other variable, whereas non-splinted implants exhibited higher risk of failure when placed in men (OR = 3.2) and when implants shorter than 10 mm were used (OR = 3.6 and 4.1 for 8.5 mm and 7 mm, respectively). Regardless of group, 71.4% of the unsuccessful implants failed before the end of the first year after loading.


Non-splinted posterior short implants had a somewhat lower success rate than splinted short implants, and the failure rate in non-splinted short implants appeared to be greater in males as well as in implants ≤10 mm.


Alveolar bone loss; dental implants; dental prostheses; implant supported; prostheses failure; prosthodontics; single-tooth

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