Do Implants Speed Up Natural Facial Bone Loss With Aging?

Q: Dr. Eppley, Would the implants speed up bone degradation? If the jaw bone shrinks in size with age, will the implant no longer touch the bone and can that cause problems? Also if the implant is removed to be swapped out for a smaller one with age, what can be done about the stretched and loose skin present on the jaw and chin?

A: I am not aware of any long term ‘bone degradation’ with facial implants in looking at many 3D CT scans of patients who have been implanted for 20 to 30 years. I am not sure where this concept emanates from but it does not come from any scientific study. Similarly where does the concept of jaw size decreae with age come from? That only occurs if all teeth are lost and much of the alveolar bone, where the implants do not sit, resorbs.

Dr. Barry Eppley

World Renowned Plastic Surgeon