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Volume 33 , Issue 3
May/June 2018

Pages 580–589


Comparison of Marginal Bone Loss Between Implants with Internal and External Connections: A Systematic Review

Natalia Palacios-Garzón, DDS/Elisabeth Mauri-Obradors, DDS, PhD/Xavier Roselló-LLabrés, MD, DDS, PhD/Albert Estrugo-Devesa, MD, DDS, PhD/Enric Jané-Salas, MD, DDS, PhD/José López-López, MD, DDS, PhD


PMID: 29763496
DOI: 10.11607/jomi.6190

Purpose: The objective of this systematic review was to compare the loss of marginal bone between implants with internal and external connections by analyzing results reported in studies published after 2010. Materials and Methods: A literature search in MEDLINE with the keywords “dental implant connections, external internal implant connection, bone loss implant designs, internal and external connection implant studies in humans” was conducted. Clinical trials on human beings, comparing both connections and published in English, from 2010 to 2016 were selected. Their methodologic quality was assessed using the Jadad scale. Results: From the initial search, 415 articles were obtained; 32 were chosen as potentially relevant based on their titles and abstracts. Among them, only 10 finally met the inclusion criteria. A total of 1,523 patients with 3,965 implants were analyzed. Six out of 10 studies observed that internal connections showed significantly less bone loss compared with external connections. The remaining four articles did not find statistically significant differences between the two connections. Conclusion: According to this systematic review and considering its limitation due to the degree of heterogeneity between the included studies, both internal and external connections present high survival rates. To assess whether marginal bone loss differs significantly between the two connections, more homogenous clinical studies are needed with identical implant characteristics, larger samples, and longer follow-up periods. Studies included in this review and characterized by long-term follow-ups showed that the external connection is a reliable connection on a long-term basis.


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