Updated Clinical Considerations for Dental Implant Therapy in Irradiated Head and Neck Cancer Patients

Authors

  • Takako Imai Tanaka DDS, FDS RCSEd,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Periodontics and Oral Medicine, University of Michigan School of Dentistry, Ann Arbor, MI
    • Department of Biomedical & Diagnostic Sciences, University of Detroit Mercy School of Dentistry, Detroit, MI
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Hsun-Liang Chan DDS, MS,

    1. Department of Periodontics and Oral Medicine, University of Michigan School of Dentistry, Ann Arbor, MI
    Search for more papers by this author
  • David Ira Tindle DDS, MS,

    1. Department of Periodontics and Oral Medicine, University of Michigan School of Dentistry, Ann Arbor, MI
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Mark MacEachern MLIS,

    1. A. Alfred Taubman Health Sciences Library, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Tae-Ju Oh DDS, MS

    1. Department of Periodontics and Oral Medicine, University of Michigan School of Dentistry, Ann Arbor, MI
    Search for more papers by this author

  • The authors deny any conflicts of interest.

  • The article is associated with the American College of Prosthodontists' journal-based continuing education program. It is accompanied by an online continuing education activity worth 1 credit. Please visit www.wileyhealthlearning.com/jopr to complete the activity and earn credit.

Correspondence

Takako I. Tanaka, 2700 MLK Jr. Blvd., Detroit, MI 48208-2576. E-mail: tanakata@udmercy.edu

Abstract

An increasing number of reports indicate successful use of dental implants (DI) during oral rehabilitation for head and neck cancer patients undergoing tumor surgery and radiation therapy. Implant-supported dentures are a viable option when patients cannot use conventional dentures due to adverse effects of radiation therapy, including oral dryness or fragile mucosa, in addition to compromised anatomy; however, negative effects of radiation, including osteoradionecrosis, are well documented in the literature, and early loss of implants in irradiated bone has been reported. There is currently no consensus concerning DI safety or clinical guidelines for their use in irradiated head and neck cancer patients. It is important for health care professionals to be aware of the multidimensional risk factors for these patients when planning oral rehabilitation with DIs, and to provide optimal treatment options and maximize the overall treatment outcome. This paper reviews and updates the impact of radiotherapy on DI survival and discusses clinical considerations for DI therapy in irradiated head and neck cancer patients.

Ancillary