There are a lot of dental implant manufacturers! The dental implant field is very competitive. Using dental implants to replace missing teeth is now well-established technique, with years of research behind the basic principles. It is safe, with a very high success rate. More and more patients are asking their dentists about getting implants, and so more and more dentists are doing the extra training required, and the market is expanding very rapidly.
As you might expect, a lot of dental implant companies want to jump on the bandwagon! Quite a few of them have copied or "borrowed" ideas from others. BUT WHO ARE THE TOP dental implant manufacturers? Which have the most research on their designs? Which have highest success rates?
There is a core of less than FIVE manufacturers that have a proven high-quality product with research and a track record behind them.
One of the first with a documented research record was AstraTech. This is part of the swedish company AstraZeneca.
When I went to an AstraTech course in Gothenburg, Sweden, a few years ago, they explained how they came to get that record.
Astra was originally a pharmaceutical company. ALL pharmaceutical companies have to document ALL their drug and pharmaceutical research precisely, in great detail, explaining HOW the research was done, and providing EVIDENCE of the results. Otherwise the products would not receive approval from the authorities (like the FDA in America) to sell to the public. It was very simple - no documented research on their drugs meant NO approval to market those drugs.
So, when the AstraTech division started research into dental implants, they documented everything the same way, just as if it were pharmaceuticals.
No other dental implant manufacturer did this at first. And so AstraTech has the longest research record into dental implants of any company, because it's just the way things were done at Astra! And still today, AstraTech is widely regarded as being a very high quality dental implant.
Ankylos is the only other implant system (apart from Astra) that a particular piece of research showed did not suffer from potential "microgap" problems. This microgap is a microscopic space that may open up between the implant itself and the crown on top, during chewing. This possible microgap only opens a microscopic amount, for fractions of a second, but it may be enough to allow bacteria in there.
It's important because bacteria can get in there and set up a chronic low-grade infection. This can cause mild redness and swelling of the gum around the implant. It's more annoying than anything else.
But it can cause a bad odor, and it MAY cause enough inflammation over the course of a few years to weaken the implant attachment to bone. Then the implant works loose. Read more about this problem at Dental Implant Infection.
Ankylos is an excellent, well-researched system from a reputable company.
Straumann / ITI is a swiss system. ITI stands for International Team for Implantology. This is a group of top dentists who got together to agree on set standards for dental implants. This group is still active, and has a very close association with Straumann. This implant system is also an excellent one.
Nobel Biocare + Branemark. Of course, Professor Branemark is the "father" of modern dental implants. (read about dental implant history here) Nobel Biocare has since acquired the Branemark company, and still includes the Branemark design in its range. However, there have been significant advances, and Nobel Biocares' own implants are now a better choice.
The dental implant manufacturers listed here are, in my personal opinion, among the best available. There are very many others, some of them also very good, but few will have the scientific evidence of how well their implants work over 10 or 15 or 20 years. If this is important to you, ask your dentist what dental implant manufacturer is being used, and how many years of research they have.
Page written by dentist Dr. Richard Mitchell