Autogenous tissue grafting occurs when tissue is taken from one part of your body for use in another part of your body. Grafting can be done using bone or soft tissue.
Intraoral harvesting is done by taking bone fragments from the upper and lower jaw bones. The entire harvesting procedure occurs inside the oral cavity and does not leave any visible scarring. However, the downside to getting bone orally is that the amount of bone you can obtain is limited. Usually, it is only enough to fill small voids created by extractions or gum disease.
When more bone is needed than can be obtained orally to fill larger voids created by multiple tooth extractions or severe deterioration of the jaw bone, an extraoral site is chosen to harvest. The most common spot to harvest bone for dental bone grafting procedures is the iliac crest. The iliac crest is the curved area on top of the pelvis. Other harvesting locations include the tip of the femur, radius, tibia, and thigh bones.
Soft Tissue Harvesting
A periodontist Vero Beach, Fl, can also harvest soft tissue intraorally for use in other parts of the mouth. Typically, tissue is removed from one area of the gums and secured to the areas that have been damaged by gum disease. The signs you might need a soft tissue graft include bleeding gums, red and swollen gums, exposed tooth roots, loose teeth, and sensitive teeth.
There are three types of intraoral soft tissue grafts used by Vero Beach Dental groups.
- Connective Tissue. This is typically used to cover exposed tooth roots.
- Free Gingival. This type of graft is used to cover thin gum tissue.
- Pedicle. This graft uses tissue surrounding the grafting site instead of getting it from another area of the mouth.
Types of Bone Harvested
There are two main bone structures harvested intra- and extraorally.
Cortical:This is the part of the bone that forms the outer layer and makes up roughly 80 percent of all bones. The harvested pieces are shaped to fit into a void. The dentist in Vero Beach, Fl, can secure the piece in place with osteosynthesis screws.
Cancellous: The is the inner part of the bone. It is made up of a less dense and softer spongy material than the outer layer. The cancellous part of the bone is also where the marrow and blood vessels are located. The material is ground down and formed into a paste, gel, powder, or other material that can be packed into a void to allow for bone growth to occur.
Procedure for Harvesting Bone
An incision is made over the harvesting site to gain access to the bone underneath the skin. Once exposed, the dentist Vero Beach will slice away part of the bone and remove it. The piece removed with either be sized to fit into the void or it will be grounded down into a paste or other type of material and then forced into the space to fill the void.
The healing times vary depending on the overall health of the patient and the type of procedure done.
Intraoral Bone Grafts
Most patients start to feel better after a few days. During this time, it is best to limit physical activity to allow the initial healing process to take place. It will usually take several months or more for the bone to completely heal.
Extraoral Bone Grafts
The healing timeline can take up to six months or more. During this time, you will typically be advised to avoid any extreme physical activity.
Soft tissue grafts take the quickest to heal. Patients generally start to feel better within a couple of days and are usually fully recovered in a couple of weeks.
In all cases, there will often be some soreness, but over-the-counter pain medications can usually control most of it. Your periodontist in Vero Beach, Fl, will typically prescribe antibiotics to reduce the chance of infections until the soft tissue wounds created by incisions or tissue harvesting are healed.