Basic terminology in implant dentistry

Osseointegration

A direct structural and functional connection between ordered, living bone and the surface of a load-carrying implant 1.

Endosseous dental implant

A device inserted into the jaw bone (endosseous) to support a dental prosthesis. It is the ‘tooth root’ analogue and is often referred to as a ‘fixture’ 2.

Implant abutment

The component which attaches to the dental implant and supports the prosthesis. A transmucosal abutment (TMA) is one which passes through the mucosa overlying the implant. A temporary or healing abutment may be used during the healing of the peri-implant soft tissue before the definitive abutment is chosen 2.

Abutment screw

A screw used to connect an abutment to the implant 2.

Single stage implant surgery

Surgical placement of a dental implant which is left exposed to the oral cavity following insertion. This is the protocol used in non-submerged implant systems 2.

Two stage implant surgery

Initial surgical placement of a dental implant which is buried beneath the mucosa and then subsequently exposed with a second surgical procedure some months later. This is used in submerged implant systems 2.

Ref:

1. Albrektsson et al. Acta Orthopaedica Scand 1981.
2. Richard Palmer, Introduction to dental implants BDJ, vol 187, No. 3, Aug 14.