Short dental implants as compared to maxillary sinus augmentation procedure for the rehabilitation of edentulous posterior maxilla: Three-year results of a randomized clinical study

Silvio Taschieri, Alessandra Lolato, Tiziano Testori, Luca Francetti, Massimo Del Fabbro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: Several treatment options exist for the implant-supported rehabilitation of edentulous posterior maxilla. Purpose: To compare maxillary sinus floor augmentation associated to standard length implants, with direct placement of implants of reduced length in the available residual bone. Materials and Methods: Patients with edentulous posterior maxilla and a residual height of 4-7 mm were randomly allocated to the test (short implants [SIs], 6.5 to 8.5mm long) or the control (sinus augmentation [SA] and implants ≥10mm long) group. Anorganic bovine bone was the grafting material for the control group. In both groups pure platelet-rich plasma was used to bioactivate implant surface prior to insertion. Implant and prosthesis survival, clinical variables, radiographic bone level change, quality of life, and patient satisfaction were assessed. Results: Twenty-five patients were treated in the control group (58 standard length implants) and 27 in the test group (42 SIs). After 3 years of follow-up no implant failure and biological or mechanical complications were recorded. Marginal bone loss, soft tissue, and oral hygiene parameters were similar in the 2 groups at both 1 and 3 years' follow-up. Postoperative pain, swelling and other symptoms and daily activities were better in the SIs group than in the SA group, while patients' satisfaction after 1 year was similar. Conclusions: In spite of comparable medium-term clinical and radiographic outcomes, when the residual ridge height is sufficient for a safe placement, SIs may be preferred due to simplified protocol, less invasiveness, shorter treatment time, and reduced postoperative discomfort as compared to SA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9
Number of pages20
JournalClinical Implant Dentistry and Related Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018



  • Dental implants
  • Posterior maxilla
  • Quality of life
  • Short implants
  • Sinus augmentation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oral Surgery
  • Dentistry(all)

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