Duration: 15 minutes, 17 seconds

Author: Dr. Sascha A. Jovanovic

Sinus Lift using Lateral Window Approach with Placement of 2 Implants


In this article, we will discuss the sinus lift procedure using the lateral window approach and its significance in creating space for the placement of dental implants. This procedure is commonly used when there is inadequate bone in the upper jaw for implant placement.

What is a Sinus Lift?

A sinus lift, also known as a sinus augmentation, is a surgical procedure performed to increase the amount of bone in the upper jaw near the molars and premolars. The purpose of this procedure is to create space in the sinus cavity to allow for the placement of dental implants.

The Procedure

The sinus lift using the lateral window approach involves the following steps:

  1. Administration of Anesthesia: Before the procedure begins, the patient will be given local anesthesia to numb the surgical area and ensure a pain-free experience.
  2. Creation of Incision: The oral surgeon will create a small incision in the gum tissue above the premolar and molar teeth.
  3. Accessing the Sinus Cavity: After the incision, a small window is created in the lateral wall of the maxillary sinus, providing access to the sinus cavity.
  4. Elevation of the Sinus Membrane: The sinus membrane, which lines the sinus cavity, is gently lifted, creating a space below it.
  5. Placement of Graft Material: A bone graft material, typically composed of sterile, biocompatible material, is placed in the newly created space.
  6. Implant Placement: Two dental implants are then carefully inserted into the grafted area.
  7. Suture Placement: To promote proper healing and closure of the incision, sutures are placed in the gum tissue.

Why is the Lateral Window Approach Preferred?

The lateral window approach is the preferred technique for a sinus lift procedure due to its versatility and effectiveness. The creation of a window in the lateral wall of the maxillary sinus allows for better visibility and access to the sinus cavity. This approach provides the oral surgeon with ample space to perform the grafting procedure and effectively place dental implants.

Advantages of the Lateral Window Approach:

  • Enhanced Visibility: The lateral window approach provides clear visibility of the sinus cavity, ensuring accurate placement of bone graft material and dental implants.
  • Improved Graft Stability: With better access to the sinus cavity, the oral surgeon can achieve increased graft stability, promoting successful bone integration.
  • Ability to Perform Simultaneous Implant Placement: The lateral window approach allows for immediate implant placement after the sinus lift procedure, reducing the overall treatment time.

Indications for Sinus Lift with Lateral Window Approach

The sinus lift using the lateral window approach is typically recommended in the following cases:

  1. Insufficient Bone Volume: When there is inadequate bone in the upper jaw, the lateral window approach provides the necessary space for successful implant placement.
  2. Loss of Teeth: The loss of teeth in the posterior upper jaw can lead to bone resorption, requiring a sinus lift to rebuild the bone before implant placement.
  3. Trauma or Disease: Trauma to the maxillary sinus or certain medical conditions may result in reduced bone volume, necessitating a sinus lift procedure.

Recovery and Aftercare

After the sinus lift procedure, it is essential to follow proper aftercare instructions provided by the oral surgeon. Some common guidelines include:

  • Avoiding strenuous activities for a few days to promote healing.
  • Taking prescribed antibiotics and pain medications as directed.
  • Following a soft food diet for a few weeks to avoid putting excessive pressure on the surgical site.
  • Maintaining good oral hygiene by gently brushing and flossing the teeth, avoiding the surgical site.


The sinus lift using the lateral window approach is a surgical procedure that creates space in the maxillary sinus to facilitate the placement of dental implants. This procedure is commonly performed when there is insufficient bone in the upper jaw. The lateral window approach offers improved visibility and access to the sinus cavity, ensuring successful grafting and implant placement. With proper care and aftercare, patients can achieve a restored smile and improved oral function.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How long does it take to recover from a sinus lift procedure?

The recovery time can vary depending on the individual and the complexity of the procedure. Generally, it takes around 4-6 months for the bone graft to integrate fully before dental implants can be placed.

2. Are there any potential risks or complications associated with a sinus lift?

As with any surgical procedure, there are risks involved. Potential complications may include infection, bleeding, damage to surrounding structures, or sinus issues. However, these risks can be minimized by choosing an experienced oral surgeon.

3. How long do dental implants last after a sinus lift procedure?

With proper care and maintenance, dental implants placed after a sinus lift procedure can last a lifetime. Regular dental check-ups and good oral hygiene practices are essential to ensure the longevity of implants.

4. Is the sinus lift procedure painful?

The sinus lift procedure is performed under local anesthesia, ensuring that you won’t experience any pain during the surgery. Some discomfort and swelling may be present during the recovery period, but this can be easily managed with prescribed pain medications.

5. Can anyone undergo a sinus lift procedure?

An oral surgeon will assess the individual’s specific case to determine if a sinus lift is suitable. Factors such as overall health, bone quality, and specific dental needs will be considered before recommending the procedure.

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