A study in an American journal has warned about the implications of dental implants.

Published last month in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association (JAVMA), the article was written by two veterinary dentists, Frank Verstraete and Boaz Arzi, and professor of veterinary ethics and law Jerrold Tannenbaum from the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine.

The article urges vets to resist using implants and while the number using them is limited, the commentary warns this could soon change.

“We argue, however, that data suggesting dental implants are safe and beneficial in humans cannot be extrapolated to animals,” states the JAVMA commentary.

It is also argued evidence regarding the safety and efficacy of dental implants in dogs and cats is currently insufficient to justify their use, and that the claimed medical and quality-of-life benefits associated with dental implants in dogs and cats do not outweigh the potential risks associated with them.

It is also claimed that functional demands of an animal’s use of its teeth are much different than that of humans and that implants are unnecessary, unethical and there is lack of scientific evidence suggesting implants are effective and safe.

“We are not aware of any published peer-reviewed studies of the long-term efficacy and safety of dental implants in pet or working dogs,” the commentary continues.

The authors also state teeth extractions in dogs and cats have no negative impact on their mouth’s functionality or their quality of life. They are able to eat normally and engage in numerous activities that involve the use of their mouth.

The full article can be read at: http://avmajournals.avma.org/doi/full/10.2460/javma.243.12.

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