The purpose of this study was to evaluate mandibular asymmetry in youngsters with posterior unilateral crossbite (PUXB), through cone-beam computed tomography and reverse engineering technique, before and after rapid maxillary expansion (RME) treatment.
Materials and methods
Forty cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) images were obtained from all patients at two time points, namely T0 acquired before the placement of a Hyrax expander and T1 after appliance removal. The CBCT scans were segmented and volume rendered into a surface there-dimensional (3D) mesh model. Thereafter, mandibular models were digitally registered by using a “best-fit” algorithm. Surface and volumetric changes, between T0 and T1, were compared by using Student’s t tests.
A slight increase of 0.45 cm3 of the total mandibular volume was found at T1 when compared with T0 (p < 0.001). The mandibular hemi-volume on the crossbite side (CB) was slightly smaller than the non-crossbite side both at T0 and T1. However, the mean differences of hemi-volume from the CB (crossbite) and non-CB side between T0 and T1 show a decrease of 0.26 cm3 (p < 0.001). Findings for the surface-to-surface deviation analysis demonstrated a fine percentage of matching at T0 which slightly improved at T1 (p < 0.001).
Youngsters affected by PUXB showed a very slight and not statistically significant volumetric and morphological asymmetry between CB side and non-CB side at T0. However, the change in mean differences of 0.26 cm cannot be considered clinically relevant.
Mandibles in young PUXB patients exhibit only a very mild mandibular asymmetry. Although the statistically significant mean change found right after RME removal cannot be considered clinically relevant, a more consistent sample and a longer follow-up could be of interest in explaining the short-term findings.
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This work has been performed with funds of the Department of General Surgery and Surgical-Medical Specialties, University of Catania, Catania, Italy.
Conflict of interest
All authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. Ethical approval was obtained from the Institutional Review Board of Indiana University-Purdue University (IRB protocol number: 1708606623).
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study
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Leonardi, R.M., Aboulazm, K., Giudice, A.L. et al. Evaluation of mandibular changes after rapid maxillary expansion: a CBCT study in youngsters with unilateral posterior crossbite using a surface-to-surface matching technique. Clin Oral Invest (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00784-020-03480-5
- Facial asymmetry