Medical

PEEK-polymer-based dental prosthetics reduce bone loss

12th December 2019
Alex Lynn

The MALO CLINIC, Lisbon, has provided further evidence that compared to metal prosthetics, high-performance polymer-based solutions made using the JUVORA dental disc from Invibio Biomaterial Solutions, indicate improved patient outcomes, including three times-less bone loss. The JUVORA disc is constructed from PEEK-OPTIMA, from Invibio.

The MALO Clinic presented these findings at the Congress of the European Association for Osseointegration (EAO), Lisbon, 26th September, 2019. This latest study follows earlier findings presented by the MALO CLINIC in 2018.

The MALO CLINIC's presentation incorporated the results of a three-year follow-up study of the use of the CAD/CAM-millable JUVORA disc as a substructure for the Clinic's signature All-on-4 procedure, where prostheses supported full-arch implant-supported restorations for edentulous patients. 

"Our conclusion, after three years of follow-up, is that it must be the PEEK-OPTIMA biomaterial that is helping to enhance patient results, and we think this is really exciting," commented Miguel Nobre, Director of Oral Hygiene and R&D, MALO CLINIC. "What JUVORA offers us is confidence that patients are receiving the best possible treatment, and not experiencing unnecessary bone loss." 

Specifically, the evidence presented at the EAO in September showed that compared to metal, use of the JUVORA-based prostheses had positive results.

  • Three times-lower marginal bone loss.
  • Peri-implant disease avoided in most patient cases.
  • Patients reported an improved quality of life.
  • Absence of correlation between plaque and bleeding.
  • High implant survival, close to 100%.

PEEK-OPTIMA offers several mechanical benefits over metal frameworks, namely, a more favourable strength-to-weight ratio and the potential for shock absorbtion. Metal prosthetics are naturally stronger; however they are less resilient and can be less comfortable for the patient.

If left untreated, bone loss can lead to pain, infection and loss of lower facial structure as the infection eats away at the jaw bone.

Nobre added: "The All-on-4 technique has not changed; our experienced surgeons have not changed – the only change is the material substructure. Therefore, when the JUVORA disc is used as the substructure for All-on-4, the PEEK-OPTIMA material mimics the behaviour of natural periodontal ligament by providing a cushioning and shock-absorbing effect in the mouth, under extreme force.”

The MALO CLINIC did not discriminate in its patient selection and included a number of cases with complex histories, including heavy bruxers. This means that even in complex cases, JUVORA exhibits better performance than conventional dental materials such as titanium.

The shock-absorbing properties of PEEK-OPTIMA are explained by its modulus of elasticity, which is very similar to that of cortical bone. When stress transfer is measured against conventional dental materials, PEEK exhibits the most shock absorption.

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