For some patients, there may be insufficient bone in the upper jaw to place implants. A bone graft may be necessary to generate new bone for a dental implant. This procedure is knows as a "sinus lift" or "sinus augmentation".
What is a sinus?
A sinus is a normal hollow cavity in the skull. The sinus related to implant therapy is the maxillary sinus, which is located in the back of the upper jaw behind your cheeks and above the roots of your teeth.
Why would I need a sinus lift?
When the upper teeth are lost, there may be a limited amount of bone between the sinus and the mouth. Dental implants need adequate bone to be successful. To obtain adequate bone levels, a sinus lift may be necessary to ensure implant success.
Are there different types of sinus lift procedures?
Yes, there are two different sinus lift procedure.
Most commonly is a "vertical sinus lift" or "internal sinus lift". In this approach, a small opening in the bone is prepared and the sinus is pushed upward, i.e. vertically. The space is filled with a bone graft followed by a dental implant. After a period of approximately four month of healing, the dental implant can be used to stabilize a replacement tooth.
A "lateral sinus lift" or "window sinus lift" is performed when there is insufficient bone to stabilize a dental implant. A small hole in the jawbone is made to then "lift" the sinus and place a bone graft. Since this requires the growth of additional new bone, a waiting period of roughly nine months occurs prior to implant placement. In these cases, a sinus graft makes it possible for patients to have dental implants.
Cases Completed by Dr. Matthew Silverstein
Case Example #1
A patient with insufficient bone for a dental implant in the upper jaw had a 3-D scan performed prior to a "window sinus lift". A regular dental x-ray shows newly formed bone and the ability to place a dental implant.
Case Example #2
A patient required additional bone to support a dental implant in the upper jaw. An "internal sinus" lift was performed to grow bone around the implant. This enabled the patient to have a long-lasting solution for his missing tooth.
If you were told you lack bone for a dental implant, contact our office for an evaluation. You may be an implant candidate after a sinus lift.