Effects of titanium surface topography on bone integration: a systematic review

Ann Wennerberg, Tomas Albrektsson
Clin. Oral Impl. Res. 20 (Suppl. 4), 2009 / 172–184

Aim: To analyse possible effects of titanium surface topography on bone integration. Materials and methods: Our analyses were centred on a PubMed search that identified 1184 publications of assumed relevance; of those, 1064 had to be disregarded because they did not accurately present in vivo data on bone response to surface topography. The remaining 120 papers were read and analysed, after removal of an additional 20 papers that mainly dealt with CaP-coated and Zr implants; 100 papers remained and formed the basis for this paper. The bone response to differently configurated surfaces was mainly evaluated by histomorphometry (bone-to-implant contact), removal torque and pushout/ pullout tests.

Results and discussion: A huge number of the experimental investigations have demonstrated that the bone response was influenced by the implant surface topography; smooth (Sao0.5 mm) and minimally rough (Sa 0.5–1 mm) surfaces showed less strong bone responses than rougher surfaces. Moderately rough (Sa41–2 mm) surfaces showed stronger bone responses than rough (Sa42 mm) in some studies. One limitation was that it was difficult to compare many studies because of the varying quality of surface evaluations; a surface termed ‘rough’ in one study was not uncommonly referred to as ‘smooth’ in another; many investigators falsely assumed that surface preparation per se identified the roughness of the implant; and many other studies used only qualitative techniques such as SEM. Furthermore, filtering techniques differed or only height parameters (Sa, Ra) were reported.

- Surface topography influences bone response at the micrometre level.
- Some indications exist that surface topography influences bone response at the nanometre level.
- The majority of published papers present an inadequate surface characterization.
- Measurement and evaluation techniques need to be standardized.
- Not only height descriptive parameters but also spatial and hybrid ones should be used.