Dental implants are generally considered a safe and highly predictable surgical procedure performed by many clinicians with the aim of replacing missing teeth. Yet to this day, a number of implants placed in adequate bone volume are lost each year within a 2-8 week period following implant placement for yet explained reasons. As society continues to consume lower quality foods and rely more heavily on fast foods, a large percentage of today’s population is increasingly demonstrating vitamin deficiency upon testing owing to this lack of nutritional intake. These deficiencies are even more pronounced in the aging population where a greater percentage of dental implants are placed. Unfortunately, one of the most prominent deficiencies known to mankind is that of vitamin D, a water-soluble vitamin critical for proper immune function as well as bone homeostasis. Over the past decade, vitamin D deficiency has been observed in ~70% of the population and particularly in post-menopausal osteoporotic women where vitamin D is commonly prescribed (with various co-factors such as vitamin K) with the aim of further optimizing bone density and halting disease progression.
Interestingly, recent dental implant studies have found that while smoking and generalized periodontitis is generally associated with a ~50%-200% increase in dental implant failure, studies have more recently shown that vitamin D deficiency is associated with up to a 300% increase in early implant failure. These shocking findings further highlight the fact that systemic health, including adequate vitamins and minerals, play a critical role in biomaterial/dental implant integration.
Dr. Richard Miron is currently an Adjunct Professor in the department of Periodontology at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA where he started working in April 2016. He previously worked for 7 years in Bern Switzerland in the Oral Surgery department as head of pre-clinical research under Chair Daniel Buser and Anton Sculean.
He has currently published over 100 peer-reviewed articles and lectures internationally on many topics relating to growth factors, bone biomaterials and guided bone regeneration. He has recently been awarded many international prizes in dentistry and is widely considered as one of the top contributors to implant dentistry having won the International Team for Implantology Andre Schroeder Prize in 2016, the International Association of Dental Research (IADR) Young Investigator of the Year in the field of Implant Dentistry in 2015, and the American Academy of Implant Dentistry Young Investigator of the year award in 2014.