The socket shield technique for immediate implant placement: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Shah, Maanas S.
Alabdulkareem, Mohammad N.
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Background: Immediate implant placement with socket shield technique (SST) may maintain the buccal bone plate and soft tissue levels, however, the potential clinical benefits of SST lack strong scientific evidence. The aim of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to evaluate the effects of SST on dimensional changes of hard tissues, esthetic outcomes, implant stability, complication, and implant failure rates. Methods: Electronic databases were searched to identify randomized controlled trials (RCTs) that compared immediate implant placement with and without SST. The risk of bias was assessed using the Cochrane Collaboration's Risk of Bias tool. Data were analyzed using a statistical software program. Results: A total of 982 studies were identified, of which, seven RCTs with 206 immediately placed dental implants in 191 participants were included. Overall meta-analysis showed significant differences in the changes in buccal bone plate width (mean difference (MD) -0.22; 95% confidence interval (CI) -0.30 to -0.15; p < 0.0001) and height (MD -0.52; 95% CI -0.85 to -0.18; p = 0.002) in favor of SST. The use of SST was also associated with significantly less changes in peri-implant marginal bone levels and better pink esthetic score than immediately placing implants without SST. The differences in implant stability, complication and implant failure rates were not statistically significant between immediate implant placement with or without SST. Conclusions: The short-term complication and implant failure rates following immediate implant placement with or without SST were comparable. The SST has short-term positive effects on the changes in width and height of buccal bone plate, peri-implant marginal bone levels and esthetic outcomes. Further evidence from long-term RCTs are still required to substantiate the current findings. Clinical significance: SST can reduce changes in buccal plate width and height and improve the soft tissue profile following immediate implant placement in esthetic zone.