March 3, 2013

Sinus Lift and Implants

Patients that are missing teeth in the back of their upper jaw may not be ideal candidates for dental implants if they have large sinuses. The maxillary sinus is a large, air filled cavity that often expands after the upper teeth are removed. Often times a sinus lift procedure is needed before dental implants can be placed. Below is a case that was treated by Dr. Phillip Kraver.

Sinus Lift Needed

Sinus lift is needed prior to implant placement.

Bob came to us with a large bridge in his upper left area that had broken off multiple times. Another bridge was not an option because of the number of teeth that were missing. His only two options for replacing the missing teeth were a partial denture or dental implants. Because his sinuses had expanded in the years following tooth extraction, he needed to have a sinus lift before implant placement. In some cases,  implants can be be placed simultaneously with the sinus lift procedure. Bob decided that he did not want a partial denture and that he would like to have the sinus lift and implants completed under IV sedation.

Sinus lift and implants.

Completed sinus lift and implants.

After 6 months of healing, an xray was taken of the healed bone and implants. Notice the floor of the sinus is now above the top of the implants.  Bob now has 3 individual implants with crowns that allow for optimal chewing and the ability to floss. Implants have a very long term survival rate and Bob should expect to have these implants the rest of his life, with little long term maintenance outside of his regular 6-month cleaning appointments.