, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp 171-176
Date: 17 Dec 2008

Clinical application of artificial bone in the maxillofacial region

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Hard tissue reconstruction is very useful for bony defects of the maxillofacial region. Autogenous bone, allogeneic bone, and artificial bone have been used to reconstruct maxillofacial bone; however, the use of autogenous bone involves high surgical invasiveness because of the need to harvest the bone. The use of allogeneic bone is associated with infections, raises ethical concerns, and is not widely used in Japan. Artificial bone has several advantages, including no need for bone harvesting, excellent biocompatibility, and a relatively easy surgical procedure. Use of artificial bone avoids the much greater invasiveness of harvesting bone, and several types of artificial bone have been developed. Design requirements for artificial bone include surgical manipulability, structural compatibility with the defective area, support properties, and the ability to induce bone regeneration; however, no artificial bone meeting all these requirements has yet been developed. Artificial bone is used in many patients in our medical center, and we have been active in developing the next generation of artificial bone with better properties. In this article, we present a case history and discuss the future development of artificial bone for use in maxillofacial reconstruction.