Peter Brussee


The purpose of this study was to investigate the possible effects of a calcium and vitamin D supplement on the resorption of alveolar bone following teeth extractions in human subjects. Studies have been cited which indicate a positive relationship between adequacy of calcium intake and maintenance of the bones of the jaw.

In this investigation, patients who received dentures immediately after the extraction of their remaining natural teeth were given a medication to take every day for a year.

Half the subjects received a calcium and vitamin D supplement while half received a placebo. As it was a double—blind study, neither the subjects nor the investigators knew which subjects had received the study supplement until after the experiment was over.

Panoramic radiographs of the jaws taken at the beginning and end of the study period were compared to determine the amount of alveolar bone resorption which had taken place. Tracings of the radiographs were measured to obtain quantitative data for statistical purposes.

Analysis of these data revealed significantly less alveolar bone resorption in the group that received the calcium and vitamin D supplement.

In another part of the study, the subjects' dietary calcium intakes, with or without the supplemental calcium, were determined, and these data, along with the dietary Calcium/Phosphorus ratio, were analyzed to see what correlations might exist between these factors and the observed bone resorption.

There was a much less significant correlation between calcium in take and bone loss, compared to the correlations between supplement in take and bone loss. This finding suggests that the apparent beneficial effect of the supplement in reducing or retarding alveolar bone resorption may be attributed to the vitamin D, or to the combination of vitamin D and calcium, rather than to calcium supplementation alone.




Graduate School

First Advisor

James W. Blankenship

Second Advisor

Kenneth E. Wical

Third Advisor

U. D. Register

Fourth Advisor

Grenith J. Zimmerman

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Degree Level


Year Degree Awarded


Date (Title Page)




Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings

Bone Resorption; Calcium; Dietary; Alveolar Process



Page Count

2 v; 65

Digital Format


Digital Publisher

Loma Linda University Libraries

Usage Rights

This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.


Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Collection Website


Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives

Included in

Nutrition Commons