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Open Access

Open Access


The aim of this study was to evaluate immediate versus delayed loading of two implants, six months post-surgery, supporting a locator retained mandibular overdenture. The objective was to evaluate implant bone remodelling using radiographic bone level changes (RBL) as the variable, from baseline to six months, between the test and the control groups. The secondary objectives included (1) evaluation of implant survival, (2) nature and frequency of surgical and prosthetic complications, and (3) correlation of implant length and insertion torque on RBL.

Eligible patients were randomized into test (immediate loading) and control group (delayed loading). Five patients were allocated to control group and seven to the test. All patients had two implants placed. The test group had implants loaded immediately. Baseline standardized radiographs were taken following surgery. The control group had the implants submerged, which were loaded at three months post surgery. The patients were followed up for six months and radiographs were retaken at six months to evaluate RBL. Patient and implant level analysis was done.

2/14 implants failed in the immediate loading group and no failures were seen in the delayed loading group. RBL between the groups was not statistically significant. RBL within the groups was statistically significant. Number of maintenance visits required for either group was not statistically significant. Insertion torque and implant length did not seem to effect bone level changes.

The marginal bone level changes around immediately loaded implants are comparable to those seen around implants loaded with a delayed protocol, at 6 months post surgery.