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4 Signs of Failed Bone Grafts: What Dentists Need To Know

Uncategorized Feb 08, 2023

The usual circumstances that require a dental implant contribute to jawbone deterioration in the same area, so bone grafts are commonly needed before dental implants. It’s important you know what to look for to ensure the bone graft is successful before the implant can be put in place. These are a few clear signs of failed bone grafts that will need correction before placing any implants.

Prolonged Acute Pain

Every dentist should make sure their patients know there will be some pain in the following days after the bone graft. Usually, this pain is minimal and tends to go away completely within three or four days. If the patient claims to feel serious acute pain for four or more days, or should this pain appear suddenly after the standard recovery period, the bone graft has likely failed. In this case, the situation will need a reassessment before any implant can take place.

Severe Leakage Issues

Leakage is another problem that may only be cause for concern if it gets out of control. Pus and drainage aren’t uncommon with inflamed tissue, but if there is excessive discharge, especially after a few days, the bone graft hasn’t set properly. Any excessive drainage, whether milky white, yellow, green, or bloody, is an issue that could indicate that the bone graft has failed.

Intense, Long-Term Swelling

What dentists need to know about the signs of a failed bone graft is that the duration of the symptoms is often the most important. Again, swelling is common to see right after the bone grafting procedure, but it should quickly fade. However, a failed bone graft can lead to a lot of extra gum swelling and inflammation that looks similar to gingivitis. If the swelling doesn’t go away on its own, it could mean there is an infection at the grafting site.

No Signs of Bone Growth

Perhaps the sneakiest sign that your bone graft didn’t succeed is if everything looks fine, yet there hasn’t actually been any noticeable bone growth. Sometimes, bone grafts can fail without any obvious symptoms. This lack of symptoms is why it’s crucial to check the progress of bone growth after some time. Bone grafts only help to promote natural bone growth, but sometimes they may not work as initially hoped.

If you want to learn more about this essential procedure, Simply Implant Institute offers comprehensive bone grafting CE courses for dental professionals looking to perfect the techniques they need to help their patients.


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