BACKGROUND Bisphosphonates are a class of chemical compounds used in the treatment of a variety of bone-related conditions. Bisphosphonate-related osteonecrosis of the jaws (BRONJ) is a well-recognised complication. C-terminal cross-linking telopeptide (CTX) estimation has been suggested as an indicator for the risk of BRONJ. It was reported that values <100 pg/ml represent a high risk of developing BRONJ following surgery and those between 100 and 150 pg/ml, a moderate risk. The aim of this study was to determine the effectiveness of the CTX test in predicting the development of BRONJ. METHODS This is an 18-month-prospective study of patients taking bisphosphonates, referred to a regional Maxillofacial Surgery Unit for dento-alveolar surgery. The following variables were recorded: age, gender, reason for referral, bisphosphonate type, indication for and duration of bisphosphonate treatment, medical co-morbidities, CTX value, development of BRONJ, and follow-up period. RESULTS 23 patients underwent a fasting CTX test. The mean age was 59 years (range, 44-78 years). Nineteen were taking alendronic acid, two risedronate sodium and two zoledronic acid. The mean duration of bisphosphonate treatment was 30 months (range, 8-72 months). The mean CTX value was 180 pg/ml (range, 50-370 pg/ml), with 11 patients having a value at or less than 150 pg/ml. The mean follow-up period was 5 months (range, 3-11 months). None of the patients, who underwent removal of one or more teeth, subsequently developed BRONJ. CONCLUSION The CTX test was not predictive for the development of BRONJ following oral surgery.