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A Journal on Dentistry and Maxillofacial Surgery

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Odontostomatology and Maxillofacial Surgery
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Minerva Stomatologica 2004 October;53(10):571-80


language: English, Italian

econdary bone grafting of alveolar cleft

De Riu G., Lai V., Congiu M., Tullio A.


Aim. The study evaluates the repair of residual alveolar cleft through secondary bone graft, consisting in the transplantation of autologous bone to restore the continuity of the maxillary arch and achieve normal functioning and esthetics.
Methods. During 2001-2002, 15 patients (age range 9-26 years; 7 males, 8 females) were submitted to secondary bone graft at the Maxillo-facial Surgery Operative Unit, University Hospital, Sassari. Eleven patients had complete unilateral cleft, 4 had complete bilateral cleft. All patients were operated upon by the same surgeon; they received a graft of autologous bone from the iliac crest. For preoperative and postoperative evaluation at 1 year, the following were utilised: plaster casts of the tooth arches, OPT, photographs and complete clinical documentation.
Results. Postoperative results were: 100% formation of a bone bridge between the maxillary segments; 70% closure of oro-nasal fistula; 100% maxillary stability; 80% spontaneous eruption of the canine within the graft; 70% height of alveolar ridge level I, 25% level II, 5% level III; 70% orthodontic closure; 80% optimal periodontal condition and 20% presence of gingival recession. In 1 subject the graft site became infected, in 4 cases an oro-nasal fistula remained.
Conclusion. This method was found to be the most valid one at present. The best period to intervene is during late childhood (9 years). Results and functional and esthetic recovery were satisfactory and encouraging to continue utilising this technique.

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