After a tooth is extracted, the residual alveolar bone undergoes marked qualitative and quantitative changes, and ridge preservation is a safe technique indicated to minimise the loss of ridge volume that typically follows extraction.
A randomised controlled trial, now summarised as JCP Digest 87, analysed modifications of extraction sockets of periodontally compromised teeth treated with ridge-preservation techniques and compared them with spontaneous healing, using volumetric analysis of standardised cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) images and histomorphometric data.
Researchers in South Korea found that placing deproteinised bone mineral with 10 percent collagen, covered with a collagen membrane, in fresh extraction sockets seemed to minimise the bone-remodelling process, resulting in a less pronounced change in the buccal profile of the alveolar crest and a better maintenance of the volume when compared to unassisted socket control.
They also found that baseline bone resorption seemed to influence the dimensional shrinkage of the ridge and that volumetric dimensional alterations of the hard tissues in severely resorbed alveolar sockets can be quite extensive.
In conclusion, the authors said that the application of a slow-resorbing xenograft with a secured covering collagen membrane may limit post-extraction bone loss and could simplify later implant insertion.
The research was summarised for JCP Digest by students of the postgraduate programme in periodontology at C.I.R. Dental School, University of Turin, in Italy.