Implants – Planning

Diagnostics & Treatment Planning

The planning of an implant case is of prime importance and in this section we have tried to break it down into smaller parts. The information here is designed to give a brief indication of the necessary planning and further advice should be sought for actual cases.

As every patient has individual expectations and needs the first element is patient evaluation. The benefits and risks of implants should be fully explained to the patient along with the procedures involved.

Should the patient prove suitable after the necessary dental/medical history is taken and all contraindications investigated then impressions can be taken for pre-operative diagnostics and treatment planning. The cast study models will be articulated and a diagnostic wax-up produced. This gives a good indication of where the implants could be placed and offers the opportunity for the patient to see how their case is being planned.

A treatment plan costing can also be produced at this time which shows the laboratory costing for the proposed implant work.

This will include all pre-operative diagnostics, temporary denture/bridge- work, the chosen restoration and all laboratory implant components. It is a comprehensive and itemised plan which can be used to assist with the costing for your patient.

Ball Bearing Stents & Drill Guides

The next stage is the fabrication of a clear acrylic template which has 5mm ball bearings attached in the approximate area of the proposed placement. This is a radiographic stent and is used for the determination of the available bone height. The use of 5mm ball bearings allows for the calibration of the radiograph.

When the area of implant placement has been determined, a surgical drill guide is made. This clear acrylic stent is perforated on the implant site and is used to precisely mark the area in the oral cavity for the placement. There is more than one type of drill guide and the photo- graphs below show the standard and 3D type.

It has been well documented that meticulous planning and patient evaluation can dramatically reduce errors and difficulties in the placement of the implant and subsequent restoration.