Soft-Tissue Management as Part of the Surgical Treatment of Periimplantitis: A Narrative Review.

Sculean, Anton; Romanos, Georgios; Schwarz, Frank; Ramanauskaite, Ausra; Keeve, Philip Leander; Khoury, Fouad; Koo, Ki-Tae; Cosgarea, Raluca (2019). Soft-Tissue Management as Part of the Surgical Treatment of Periimplantitis: A Narrative Review. Implant dentistry, 28(2), pp. 210-216. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins 10.1097/ID.0000000000000870

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The data on the importance of soft-tissue management during surgical treatment of periimplantitis are still limited, and no clinical recommendations are yet available.


To give an overview on the rationale for periimplant soft-tissue augmentation procedures in the light of potential benefits/risks of the presence/absence of keratinized/attached mucosa (KAM) providing recommendations for the clinician.


The available evidence indicates that the presence of KAM favors periimplant tissue health evidenced by improved bleeding scores and facilitation of self-performed plaque removal, less mucosal recessions, and more stable marginal bone levels over time. Therefore, the rationales to augment KAM are (a) to optimize the possibility for performing an adequate level of oral hygiene, (b) to help maintaining periimplant soft-tissue health and stability, and (c) to improve esthetics. Various techniques with autogenous or xenogeneic membranes have been described so far for KAM augmentation. Additional soft-tissue grafting in conjunction with a combined regenerative and resective surgical procedure seems to be effective in treating and controlling advanced periimplantitis lesions and improving or maintaining the esthetic outcomes.


The limited available data seem to indicate that the best outcome to improve the width of KAM, and the bleeding and plaque scores, as well as to maintain the periimplant marginal bone level is the use of an apically positioned flap combined with a free gingival graft in nondiseased periimplant sites. However, at present, it is unknown: (a) to what extent soft-tissue grafting may additionally improve the outcomes after surgical (resective or regenerative) treatment of periimplantitis compared with the same approaches without soft-tissue grafting, and (b) if considered, when should soft-tissue grafting be performed (eg, before or during surgical treatment of periimplantitis).


Both soft-tissue resective and regenerative approaches may lead to successful outcomes depending on the clinical indication and defect location. However, the selection of one or another surgical approach should be based on defect type (eg, intrabony and suprabony) and location (esthetic or nonesthetic areas). The presence of an adequate width and thickness of KAM may facilitate soft-tissue (flap) management. In patients with a thin phenotype or lack of an adequate width of KAM, soft-tissue grafting may improve the clinical outcomes.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Review Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > School of Dental Medicine > Department of Periodontology
04 Faculty of Medicine > School of Dental Medicine > Periodontics Research

UniBE Contributor:

Sculean, Anton


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




Lippincott Williams & Wilkins




Doris Burri

Date Deposited:

21 Jan 2020 14:15

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 15:35

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:





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