Pros and cons of All-on-4 treatment
The All-on-4 implant treatment has been growing in popularity for the last few years, which makes sense, considering that the latest research done by its creator Dr. Paulo Malo, shows that the procedure has a survival rate of approximately 94% in a 10-year stretch. In other words, once you get your implant installed, with the right care, they can last for a very long time if not forever. Considering that this procedure is a huge investment, it’s very important that the patient is aware about the pros and cons of an All-on-4 treatment, so they can make an informed choice.
The treatment was created 20 years ago by a Portugal dentist, Dr. Paulo Malo in cooperation with one of the biggest prosthetic manufacturers in the world, Nobel Biocare. The All-on-4 treatment is an affordable and simple process used for full mouth reconstruction, involving the placement of 4 implants that serve as the anchor for the prosthetic. Since the implants are placed in angled positions the dentist can usually avoid critical areas and consequently more expensive procedures such as sinus lifting or nerve relocation.
One of the greatest strengths of the All in 4 treatment is that it can be completed in a single day; with a maxillofacial C.T scan the surgical team prepares everything needed for the procedure so by end of the intervention the patient has a new set of fixed detachable prosthesis and a beautiful smile to show to the world.
It’s also one of the safest procedures out there, since it avoids critical areas such as the maxillary sinus and the mandibular nerve; it can also circumvent the need for a bone graft, reducing costs and potential discomfort. As such, the All in 4 treatment has been used worldwide for 20 years and its FDA approved.
Multi-unit abutments are used as part of the procedure to ensure adequate restoration. Do keep in mind that without regular care the screws used on the abutments may fracture, so it’s very important to follow the instruction of your dental health specialist.
Of course, it does come with a few disadvantages: it can be more expensive than other full mouth reconstructive options, if one of the implants becomes loose a full replacement and prosthetic remake are needed, and it requires adequate bone volume, so patients with compromised bone areas might not be able to opt for the procedure.
The restoration of the All in 4 treatments is traditionally composed of a metal bar covered with acrylic and denture teeth. Nevertheless some patients have reported that this kind of restoration can break and stain, which is exactly why zirconia bridges haven become an excellent replacement with a higher overall durability and a more natural look.