Accuracy and reproducibility of radiographic images for assessing crestal bone height of implants using the Precision Implant X-ray Locator (PIXRL) device

Kyle A. Malloy, Chandur Wadhwani, Bradley McAllister, Mansen Wang, James A. Katancik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Assessment of crestal bone levels around implants is essential to monitor success and health. This is best accomplished with intraoral radiographs exposed at 90 degrees to the long axis of the implant, but this can be challenging to achieve clinically. Radiographic paralleling devices produce orthogonal radiographs but traditionally have required access to the implant body for each exposure. This study was conducted to determine if use of the Precision Implant X-ray Locator (PIXRL), a radiographic paralleling device that indexes the implant at the time of surgical placement, can produce orthogonal radiographs of dental implants more accurately than traditional radiologic techniques for assessing crestal bone levels. Materials and Methods: Three dental implants were inserted in dry human skulls in supracrestal positions to simulate crestal bone loss (maxillary right first premolar [site 14], maxillary right central incisor [site 11], and mandibular left second premolar [site 35]). The implants were masked with a soft tissue moulage and restored with provisional restorations. Four dental assistants exposed six radiographs using their usual and customary technique and six using the PIXRL device for each implant. A single examiner measured crestal bone levels on the radiographs relative to the implant platform shoulder on the mesial and distal of each implant. Recorded measurements were compared to the known values. Statistical analysis was completed using a generalized linear regression model to analyze the differences, and post-hoc comparisons with pairwise adjustment were applied. Results: The images produced using the PIXRL device were more accurate overall compared to traditional techniques and were also more consistent. The greater degree of accuracy was statistically significant for all sites with the exception of the mesial measurements of the implant at site 11. Conclusion: This study demonstrates that the use of the PIXRL device can assist clinicians in obtaining more accurate orthogonal radiographs for assessing crestal bone height and would be a useful tool for researchers utilizing radiographic imaging of implants as a longitudinal measure of implant success and stability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)830-836
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Implants
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2017


  • Bone height assessment
  • Dental implants
  • Intraoral radiographs
  • Standardization
  • Success criteria

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oral Surgery


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