Soft tissue substitutes in non-root coverage procedures: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Bertl, K; Melchard, M; Pandis, Nikolaos; Müller-Kern, M; Stavropoulos, A (2017). Soft tissue substitutes in non-root coverage procedures: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Clinical oral investigations, 21(2), pp. 505-518. Springer 10.1007/s00784-016-2044-4

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Objectives The present systematic review compared the effectiveness of soft tissue substitutes (STSs) and autogenous free gingival grafts (FGGs) in non-root-coverage procedures to increase keratinized tissue (KT) width around teeth. Materials and methods Included studies fulfilled the following main eligibility criteria: (a) preclinical in vivo or human controlled trials using FGG as control, (b) non-root-coverage procedures, and (c) assessment of KT width. Meta-analysis was performed on the gain in KT width (primary outcome variable) and several secondary variables. Results Eight human trials with short observation time evaluating five different STSs were identified. FGG yielded consistently significantly (p < 0.001) larger increase in KT width irrespective whether the comparison regarded an acellular matrix or a tissue-engineered STS. Further, FGG yielded consistently ≥2 mm KT width postoperatively, while use of STS did not, in the few studies reporting on this outcome. On the other hand, STSs resulted in significantly better aesthetic outcomes and received greater patient preference (p < 0.001). Conclusions Based on relatively limited evidence, in non-root-coverage procedures, FGG (1) resulted consistently in significantly larger increase in KT width compared to STS and (2) yielded consistently ≥2 mm KT width postoperatively, while STSs did not. STSs yielded significantly better aesthetic outcomes, received greater patient preference, and appeared safe. Clinical relevance Larger and more predictable increase in KT width is achieved with FGG, but STSs may be considered when aesthetics is important. Clinical studies reporting relevant posttreatment outcomes, e.g., postop KT width ≥2 mm, on the long-term (>6 months) are warranted. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00784-016-2044-4) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > School of Dental Medicine > Department of Orthodontics

UniBE Contributor:

Pandis, Nikolaos


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health








Renate Imhof-Etter

Date Deposited:

27 Mar 2018 15:54

Last Modified:

23 Oct 2019 14:23

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:





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