The photo shows a stone cast of a patient’s vertical bone defect. This can be caused by trauma, infection, tooth loss, failed dental implants, and tumors (to name a few). Reconstruction of this defect is the hardest to do. Because of all the scar that is often seen from previous injuries or surgeries, the amount the tissue can stretch is limited which reduces the ability to do onlay bone grafting.
In a recent article in the Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Ole Jensen described a technique of grafting these area. He creates a sandwich technique where the native bone and soft tissue is pushed up because the graft elevates them. This may improve the blood supply and decrease the risk of infection.
Talk to John Freeman MD, DDS, FACS about your options in restoring these defects.