Sinus lift surgery is a maxillary sinus floor augmentation, during which the bottom wall of the sinus is thickened by using bone grafts or the bone of the patient.

Sinuses – cavities located in the posterior maxilla, they intercommunicate with the nasal cavity and are lined with mucosa.

The causes of human sinuses changes

  • As the person grows older, the sinuses get larger, the bone underneath them resorbs from above, air-filled space gets bigger.
  • Once teeth are lost, bone resorption occurs underneath the maxilla, the height of the jaw grows smaller. A possibility to place an implant without doing sinus lift surgery becomes smaller too.

When is it necessary to have sinus lift surgery?

  • First, the patient turns a specialist due to the loss of molars in the maxilla.
  • The doctor, using computed tomography, assesses the quality of the maxilla, its height, and width.
  • If the sinuses are altered, and the process of the maxilla is lowered down to 5-7 mm, and there’s no possibility of screwing in an implant, in such a case, sinus lift surgery is unavoidable.

Is it necessary to perform a sinus lift operation?

If the implants are necessary but the doctor after assessing your maxilla, says that sinuses got bigger and lowered, and the bone height up to the sinuses is too small to stabilize dental implants, then it is necessary to perform sinus lift surgery.

An alternative to sinus lift surgery

If the bone height is 6 mm and it is of good quality, then short implants could be screwed in, and the same success can be expected just like after the sinus lift surgery and placement of the long implants. However, long -term results (>10 years) of this type of treatment are not known.

The course of the sinus lift procedure

  • Anesthesia (applied locally);
  • A window is formed and opened in the anterior wall of the jaw
  • The mucosa of the sinus is carefully lifted and separated from the floor of the sinus
  • A niche is formed beneath the mucosa of the sinus, and then it is filled with bone graft
  • If the bone height is sufficient for stable fixation of the implant (>4 mm), the implant is screwed in during the same procedure
  • If needed, the window of the sinus and bone graft are covered with a membrane which protects the bone tissue from the ingrowth of the soft tissues
  • The wound is sutured
  • After 7-10 days, sutures are removed
  • After 6 months, implantation is performed (unless the implants were screwed in during the surgery)
  • After 3 – 4 months, the healing cap is screwed on
  • After 7 – 10 days, the sutures are removed, and dental impressions are made for prosthodontics

Information worth knowing:

  • Duration of the surgery – 1 to 1,5 hours.
  • The surgery procedure is painless
  • After the surgery, as the effect of the anesthesia wears off, the patient may feel gnawing, swelling may occur, mostly on the third day after the surgery. The doctor shall prescribe painkillers (they will help to quell the gnawing sensation) and antibiotics (they will protect from inflammatory complications until the primary bloodstream reaches the bone graft.
  • After the sinus lift surgery, it is recommended to stop smoking for about two months, to avoid physical load, sports, sauna. The patient should avoid sneezing and cough through the nose, avoid diving.

The doctor recommends:

In case of loss of molars in the maxilla, it is necessary to contact the specialist. As time passes, the quality and height of the bone deteriorate rapidly, and the sinuses are expanding and lowering and reducing the bone height beneath them. Then a possibility of screwing in the implants without performing sinus lift surgery becomes very small.