A bone graft is a surgical procedure that replaces missing bone with material from the patient’s own body (autogenous bone) or an artificial, synthetic, or natural substitute. The graft not only replaces missing bone, but also helps your body to regrow its own lost bone. This new bone growth strengthens the grafted area by forming a bridge between your existing bone and the graft material. Over time your own newly formed bone will replace much of the grafted material.
Bone grafts are needed when part of your body is missing bone. This missing portion of bone is frequently called a “bony defect”. Examples of jawbone defects are: defects which occur following tooth extraction; generalized decrease in quantity of jawbone from trauma or long-term tooth loss; defects surrounding “old style” dental implants; defects resulting from cysts or tumor surgery.
Guided Bone Regeneration: (GBR)
A procedure in which a membrane is placed over the bone defect site. This membrane encourages new bone to grow and also prevents the in-growth of fibrous scar tissue into the grafted site.
Recent advances in technology have dramatically increased the success of these procedures, leading to bone formation and resolution of the defect. However, depending upon the reason needed for these procedures, success rates will vary. Also, different graft and GBR materials seem to affect the amount of new bone formed. Finally, a patients overall health will help determine the degree to which new bone will form within the grafted site.
When bone grafts are used to provide support or anchorage for osseointegrated titanium implants, the success rate is generally quite similar to implants placed in naturally available bone.
Types of Bone:
There are many different types of bone grafts. Some grafts are taken from different parts of the patient’s own body (i.e. from the hip bone or chin). Other grafts come from deceased human organ donors, from synthetic materials, and from highly purified bovine bone mineral.
Likewise, there are different types of GBR membranes. Some are made from synthetic polymers and must be removed during the second surgery several weeks or months later. Other membranes are made of resorbable collagen materials.