Dimensions of the healthy gingiva and peri-implant mucosa




To determine the dimensions of the soft tissue cuff present at various aspects of teeth and to compare these dimensions to those of the mucosa surrounding single implants.

Material and methods

Fifty volunteers were recruited that were ≥25 years of age and exhibited no signs of (i) untreated caries; (ii) loss of periodontal tissue support in the incisor, canine, and premolar regions; (iii) systemic or local disease. Furthermore, among the 50 patients recruited (iV), 27 had one single implant in the maxilla with teeth present mesial and/or distal to the implant. Probing pocket depth (PPD) and transmucosal sounding depth (TS) were assessed by five experienced, carefully calibrated examiners and with the use of a periodontal probe at the proximal (mesial, distal) and flat (facial, buccal and palatal/lingual) surfaces of all teeth/implants. The width of the keratinized mucosa (KM) was also determined.


It was demonstrated that (i) PPD and TS were greater at proximal than at flat surfaces at both tooth and implant sites. In addition, both PPD and TS were deeper at implant than at tooth sites. The TS values documented that the cuff of healthy soft tissue that surrounded a tooth varied between 2 mm at flat surfaces and 4 mm at proximal surfaces, while at implant sites, the mucosa at proximal as well as flat surfaces was 1–1.5 mm greater.


The probing pocket depth (PPD) and the transmucosal sounding depth (TS) values were greater at proximal than at flat, that is, facial/palatal (lingual) surfaces at tooth sites and frequently also at implant sites. Furthermore, the PPD and the TS dimensions were greater at implant than at adjacent tooth sites.