I am on Boniva for Osteoporosis and have been for a few years. A month ago, I lost a tooth that was unsavable. I’m looking into options for replacing that tooth and was told that I cannot get a dental implant if I have Osteoporosis. Is this accurate? If so, what is my next best option?
You have asked a great question. For the benefit of others reading who may not be aware of osteoporosis, let me give a quick explanation. It is a degenerative disease that affects bone density, greatly increasing the risk of fractures. It has a tendency to affect women more than it does men. This is especially the case in post-menopausal women.
The good news is that it is possible to get a dental implant while dealing with osteoporosis, the iffy news is that there are some complicating factors involved. Your medication is one of several types of biophosphates. They work by preventing the breakdown of bone as well as bone fractures while building up the bone density. This is done by stopping the osteoclasts that eat up the bone.
Why is that a Risk Factor for Dental Implants?
Patients who take these medicines, show an increased risk of dental implant failure as well as osteonecrosis, which is death of the bone tissue. Because of that risk, it is considered important that you stop taking your medication approximately four months or more before getting your dental implant and staying off of it until the bone has had an opportunity to adequately integrate with the dental implant. At that point, you can safely start taking the medicine again.
Obviously, your osteoporosis needs to be under control for this to be a possibility, so it will be imperative that you contact your doctor and get his or her approval to pause the medication for the duration needed.
What If Your Doctor Says No?
If, by chance, you are one of the cases that cannot stop taking the medication even for limited periods of time, you do have other options. Your next best option would be to get a dental bridge.
Don’t worry yet. Talk to your doctor and get his assesment; then you can go from there.
This blog is brought to you by Philadelphia Dentist Dr. Michael Weiss.