A study published in the Journal of Oral Implantology led by Dr. Sompop Bencharit indicates that, in healthy patients, pre-operation antibiotics may not be effective in helping to keep the implant in place.
The study was conducted at the school and examined the success of implants in 15 patients. The population consisted of men and women ages 19-70 that were not on any continuous antibiotic therapy for any other medical condition. Six of the patients were placed on an antibiotic regimen before the tooth extraction and implant placement procedure; the remaining nine subjects were given a placebo instead. Follow-ups were conducted at weeks one and four, as well as six and 12 months. By week four, two of the implants had failed – one from the placebo group, and one from the group receiving antibiotics prior to the implant.
It has long been believed that giving patients antibiotics either prior to the implant surgery or after may prevent the implant failure. In this study, the investigators show that it may not matter. All implants in this study were placed immediately after removal of an infected tooth. Each implant was placed directly into the extraction socket. There was no grafting or flap or even incision made.
“What this study seems to indicate is that antibiotic regimens leading up to an implant do not seem to have an impact on the success of the implant in our selected population with this type of implant placement,” explained Bencharit. “However, this study was limited in scope to a very small subject pool, so further large-scale studies will be needed to validate these findings.”
Dr. Edward Givens, the first author, recently finished his three-year prosthodontics residency here at UNC. Bencharit served as his thesis advisor, which was in part on the recently published research.
“Dr. Givens had come up with the idea for the project three years ago after our oral biology seminar. He really took the project to his heart and worked tirelessly for the past three years,” stated Bencharit.
Co-authors on the paper include Dr. Warren Byrd of the school’s of Dental Research group, Dr. Bashir Hosseini of the school’s Department of Endodontics, Assistant Dean for Graduate and Advanced Education Dr. Ceib Phillips, and Director of Radiology Dr. Donald Tyndall. This study was partly supported by the American College of Prosthodontists Educational Fund, the American Academy of Implant Dentistry Research Foundation, and an unrestricted educational fund from Zimmer Dental Inc. The Journal of Oral Implantology is the official journal for the American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID).