Background: The subcrestal placement of implant platform has been considered a key factor in the preservation of crestal bone, but the influence of implant placement depth on bone remodeling combined with peri-implantitis is not fully understood. The aim of this study was to assess the effect of the crestal or subcrestal placement of implants on peri-implant bone defects of ligature-induced peri-implantitis in dogs. Material and Methods: Eight weeks after tooth extraction in six beagle dogs, two different types of implants (A: OsseoSpeed™, Astra, Mölndal, Sweden; B: Integra-CP™, Bicon, Boston, USA) were placed at either crestal or subcrestal (-1.5 mm) positions on one side of the mandible. Ligature-induced peri-implantitis was initiated four weeks after the installation of the healing abutment connections. After 12 weeks, tissue biopsies were processed for histological analyses. Results: Supra-alveolar bone loss combined with a shallow infrabony defect was observed in crestal level implants while deep and wide infrabony defects were present in subcrestal level groups. Subcrestal groups showed significantly greater ridge loss, depths and widths of infrabony defects when compared to crestal groups (P <0.001). Conclusions: Within the limitations of the animal study, it can be stated that the implants at subcrestal position displayed greater infra-osseous defect than implants at crestal position under an experimental ligature-induced peri-implantitis.
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