Need to get dental implant done..

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jb1
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Need to get dental implant done..

Post by jb1 » Mon Jul 10, 2017 11:52 am

Long story short, knocked my tooth out when I was younger. The implant that was put in "failed" (lol). Went to a dentist today and was told the total procedure would be about 5-6k.. I was taken back. Found out I can get the same procedure done in Poland for $800.. Flight is 400 round trip. Ive been to poland numerous times. Am I crazy for doing this?

123
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by 123 » Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:07 pm

I would suspect that if an implant "failed" there may be something about replacing it that makes it more complex then an initial implant. If that's the case it may be harder to shop remotely for an overseas dentist unless you have friends/relatives in that area that are familiar with local care providers and have had similar procedures done.
The closest helping hand is at the end of your own arm.

jb1
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by jb1 » Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:14 pm

123 wrote:I would suspect that if an implant "failed" there may be something about replacing it that makes it more complex then an initial implant. If that's the case it may be harder to shop remotely for an overseas dentist unless you have friends/relatives in that area that are familiar with local care providers and have had similar procedures done.
Quite rare for it to fail. Regardless theres no guarantee on it which is mind blowing. My best friends brother lives in Poland. Id use him as a resource.

mhalley
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by mhalley » Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:16 pm

Medical and dental tourism has become very popular. I knocked one of my front teeth out when I was a teenager, and eventually I had a bridge done. The first one lasted 40+ years, I had it redone a couple of years ago due to cosmetic appearance. I believe an implant is a better solution, but since the bridge worked well for me I kept it. I have read that Hungary and Costa Rica are good dental tourism locales.
Another option would be to go to a dental school for the procedure.
This site mentions a few practices in Costa Rica and a town in Hungary that has 160 dental clinics.
https://www.patientsbeyondborders.com/p ... /dentistry

Theseus
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by Theseus » Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:23 pm

As you get older, it is likely that you will need more and more dental services that are expensive. I would certainly try it out - if you have ability to investigate expertise and reliability - so you have a dental service that works within a reasonable budget for future problems. I know a friend whose parents accumulate and wait for their trip to the home country to get their dental services and they are very happy with it.

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Pajamas
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by Pajamas » Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:29 pm

I like the idea of medical tourism in general, but have some real concerns about it. The problem is, as someone has already pointed out, is that things can go wrong, and even if they don't, a dental implant is not just a single quick visit to the dentist, it is several visits made over time.

If a tooth has to be removed, you need to wait for it to heal for the next step. Sometimes you need to have bone transplanted first and then wait again. The implant fixture itself looks like a screw, you have to wait to let the bone and soft tissue heal around it and then have the replacement crown made and inserted. Then you probably will need at least one follow-up visit to make sure it is okay. Read up on what the procedure involves before going to another country to have it done.

If something goes wrong, then many dentists aren't going to want to deal with it and accept liability. Same for other procedures like joint replacement, it's best to have the follow-up from the original surgeon.

I have had eye exams and eyeglasses made and routine dentistry done when visiting another country and received the same quality of professional care and the same quality of eyeglasses for a fraction of the cost as they would have had here, but would hesitate with all but the most straightforward and limited procedures. The exception would be if the insurance company or foreign hospital already had a program in place for follow-up care in the U.S. or if I could arrange it myself in advance.

If you do decide to do so anyway, make sure that you get the information about the implant used in advance and make sure that compatible parts are readily available here, at a minimum.

TBillT
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by TBillT » Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:37 pm

Yes I have an implant that was many trips to dentist/implant doctor.
As mine was also an accident I believe the medical coverage was better if I recall than dental coverage.
Not sure how a second case on same tooth would be handled.
First step is often to fill the hole with bone regrowth material so that is a time step takes time for the bone to grow.
So you sort of need to know what your case would involve.

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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by TomatoTomahto » Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:51 pm

I have had a number of implants, including one that failed. As mentioned, it's not a one visit kind of procedure, and in most cases, there are months of waiting, X-rays to see progress, sometimes an MRI, giving it a little more time just to be sure, placing the implant, letting it heal, doing a trial of the crown, seeing how it fits, etc.

It is not something I'd do as a medical tourist, and definitely not to save some money. I could see having open heart surgery in Poland, but not a tooth implant. Nothing negative about Polish dentistry implied; I just don't think the procedure lends itself to medical tourism.

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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by TomatoTomahto » Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:55 pm

TBillT wrote:First step is often to fill the hole with bone regrowth material so that is a time step takes time for the bone to grow.
So you sort of need to know what your case would involve.
I've had implants that were simple (tooth extraction, heal, implant placement, heal, crown) to complex (tooth extraction, heal, sinus lift, heal, bone graft, heal, implant placement, heal, crown)

Other health issues can also complicate things, e.g., poorly managed blood glucose levels, gum disease, etc.

sawhorse
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by sawhorse » Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:56 pm

I highly recommend going to a dental school if you want to save money. Another benefit of dental schools is that they don't have an incentive to tell you that you need all sorts of unnecessary work.

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Pajamas
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by Pajamas » Mon Jul 10, 2017 1:02 pm

Oh, I just re-read and noticed that you said your current implant failed. To me, that complication would be reason enough to have it done near where I live.

If you are concerned about costs, consider going to a dental school for treatment as mentioned. Sometimes the advanced procedures like endodontic surgery and implant procedures are even done by experienced dentists who are returning to school from practice for further specialization. I go to a dental school and although it requires extra visits compared to going to a private practice dentist and a student is doing the work under fairly close supervision, the other advantages outweigh those concerns for me.

adamthesmythe
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by adamthesmythe » Mon Jul 10, 2017 1:05 pm

sawhorse wrote:I highly recommend going to a dental school if you want to save money. Another benefit of dental schools is that they don't have an incentive to tell you that you need all sorts of unnecessary work.
Dental schools might have both faculty practices and student training. Personally I do not want my dental work done by a student in training, even for less challenging procedures. Faculty practice might not be available to you.

Seems to me (as a non-dentist) that dealing with an implant that failed requires if anything more expertise that the original procedure.

munemaker
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by munemaker » Mon Jul 10, 2017 1:09 pm

jb1 wrote:
123 wrote:I would suspect that if an implant "failed" there may be something about replacing it that makes it more complex then an initial implant. If that's the case it may be harder to shop remotely for an overseas dentist unless you have friends/relatives in that area that are familiar with local care providers and have had similar procedures done.
Quite rare for it to fail. Regardless theres no guarantee on it which is mind blowing. My best friends brother lives in Poland. Id use him as a resource.
I have about 5 implants...lost track of the exact number. I had one that failed...surgeon redid it a second time and it failed again. He would not try it a 3rd time. No refund. I was warned up front. My dentist told me her mom had one fail as well. I don't think it is that uncommon.

Unless the foreigners have a different way of doing it, I just don't see how having it done offshore is practical. It takes a number of visits to complete and there can be complications. If it is practical, I would like to know because I have another one coming up. Yes, they are expensive.

MtnTraveler
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by MtnTraveler » Mon Jul 10, 2017 1:19 pm

How long ago was the implant done? The reason I ask is that two times in the last 3 yrs my old dentist "thought" my implant was going bad so I went back to the oral surgeon each time. Oral surgeon said it was rock solid but that if it did go bad the procedure they use today is different than they did 14 years ago. Basically one visit would be them removing the implant, then a few months later they would place the new implant, and 2-3 months after that (can't remember the exact time) they uncover the implant for a dentist to put a crown on. I thought it was weird my dentist thought it was failing after 14 yrs but the oral surgeon said they can fail at any time.

Also is it a general dentist or an oral surgeon/endodontists who is saying it has failed? Like I said my OLD dentist tried to tell me TWICE that my implant was failing and the specialist that came to his office needed to replace it. Both times I went back to the oral surgeon who did the work and both times he said it was rock solid and not failing in the least. Pretty sure my OLD dentist just wanted me to use the guy that comes to his office so he could get a % of the money.

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Pajamas
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by Pajamas » Mon Jul 10, 2017 1:21 pm

MtnTraveler wrote: Pretty sure my OLD dentist just wanted me to use the guy that comes to his office so he could get a % of the money.
One of the reasons I go to a dental school.

munemaker
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by munemaker » Mon Jul 10, 2017 2:39 pm

MtnTraveler wrote:How long ago was the implant done?
After the surgeon places the implant, it takes so long for the implant to bond to the bone. In my case, it got infected (shows dark on X-ray). This was before the crown was placed. Surgeon repeated and the same thing happened. Surgeon did not know why but said he only tries it twice.

My dentist was able to cantilever the crown from an adjacent implant and it has worked out ok, except there is a space under it that needs extra cleaning attention. I would have been ok if she had done this from the beginning and avoided the expense of the implant.

jb1
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by jb1 » Mon Jul 10, 2017 3:54 pm

Thank you all for the responses.

Ive been to Poland many times. Id use this as a vacation/implant trip. Cant beat $15 hotels, $1 premium beers, a cheap plane ticket.

It is something I will look into. However, Im only worth about 70k. (50k in investments, 20k cash), as a bogle, for me to spend ~9% of my networth on a [(removed) -- admin LadyGeek] tooth is stupid to me.

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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by TomatoTomahto » Mon Jul 10, 2017 4:03 pm

jb1 wrote:for me to spend ~9% of my networth on a [(removed) -- admin LadyGeek] tooth is stupid to me.
Post of the day. :sharebeer

sawhorse
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by sawhorse » Mon Jul 10, 2017 4:22 pm

jb1 wrote:It is something I will look into. However, Im only worth about 70k. (50k in investments, 20k cash), as a bogle, for me to spend ~9% of my networth on a [(removed) -- admin LadyGeek] tooth is stupid to me.
In that case I would really strongly consider a dental school. A dental school clinic literally saved my teeth a few years back when I was making $23k in a high cost of living city with no insurance. Yes you run a greater risk of having to have the work redone. I had to have a filling by a nervous student redone. But it was worth it for only $65, and I contributed to the student's learning.

It felt good knowing that they had no incentive to push expensive unnecessary treatments. Dental schools are the best place to get a second opinion.

DetroitRick
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by DetroitRick » Mon Jul 10, 2017 4:28 pm

You might also consider researching a good local oral surgeon with extensive implant experience to first assess the failure. Even if you don't proceed in the U.S., this evaluation visit may give you useful info on the needed scope of the procedure wherever you opt to do it.

There are some highly cost-effective dental ppo's (or discount plans), not insurance, that may yield savings in the states too. Here's one we've used for the last 5 years or so, and one that our current dentist still recommends:
https://edentalsolutions.com/

It has yielded substantial savings for us. But check first for inclusion of your local providers. Our experience in this regard has been good - we've had several general dentists and a few local specialists readily accept it. Since it's a discount program rather than insurance, no issue with pre-existing conditions. Frankly this has worked out better for us than any employer-based dental insurance I've ever had with only one exception (when I worked for a dental materials company that offered really great insurance coverage, not coincidentally).

Also consider Mexico as a possible cost-saver. But do very careful research on a provider there too, as you want to do anywhere. And, as others have noted, factor in multiple trips.

UncleBen
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by UncleBen » Mon Jul 10, 2017 4:33 pm

I had 3 implants done a few years ago. While I am really frugal, I didn't look for a low price when it came to someone drilling into my jaw and transplanting biological material, not to mention planting a screw very close to nerves. I looked for the best. Maybe fillings and crowns overseas but not implants. Just me.

toofache32
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by toofache32 » Mon Jul 10, 2017 10:16 pm

jb1 wrote:
123 wrote:I would suspect that if an implant "failed" there may be something about replacing it that makes it more complex then an initial implant. If that's the case it may be harder to shop remotely for an overseas dentist unless you have friends/relatives in that area that are familiar with local care providers and have had similar procedures done.
Quite rare for it to fail. Regardless theres no guarantee on it which is mind blowing. My best friends brother lives in Poland. Id use him as a resource.
Not sure what this means. If you can predict your own biology then you are doing better than the dentist. The dentist will "guarantee" your implant if YOU guarantee your bone will fuse to it. You have as much control over this as the dentist. Fortunately, implants have a ~96% success rate which is better than most medical treatments.

A failed implant is definitely a complex situation because there is usually significant bone loss which requires complex grafting which is rarely predictable. You put bone in and it dissolves away sometimes, leaving you no better off. You've often only got one shot at this because repeated procedures create more scar tissue and less blood supply which reduces the success of subsequent procedures.

Do you really want to go back to Poland if you have a problem with your implant? Do you think you will be able to find someone here that will touch it? There is an old saying in dentistry....once you touch it, you own it. As a dental specialist who places implants, I have seen many patients who went to Mexico to save a buck. When they have trouble, the patients shop for local dentists to assume responsibility but have a really tough time finding a dentist that hungry and that stupid. These are often implant brands without FDA approval so the US dentist has no way of getting parts to do anything. The patient cannot even give the dentist information on the brand, size, etc and expects the dentist to figure it out. The price goes up just for the headache and liability.

In all fairness, I have seen good and bad foreign implants. I have seen good and bad USA implants. I have placed implants that have failed just like every implant dentist. A common theme with foreign implants is that patients who went overseas for the implant are not willing to go back overseas for problems. They think it's just a screw in the bone and what could go wrong?
Last edited by toofache32 on Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:29 am, edited 1 time in total.

bsteiner
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by bsteiner » Mon Jul 10, 2017 10:22 pm

We all know not to look for the lowest cost when it comes to parachutes and toilet paper. I would add professional services to that list.

munemaker
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Re: Need to get dental implant done..

Post by munemaker » Tue Jul 11, 2017 8:58 am

bsteiner wrote:We all know not to look for the lowest cost when it comes to parachutes and toilet paper. I would add professional services to that list.
I have multiple implants and I would not buy one based solely on cost.

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