Evaluation of transverse changes in the dental arches according to growth pattern: a longitudinal study


Objective: To evaluate changes in intercanine (LICW and UICW) and intermolar (LIMW and UIMW) widths on the dental arches of subjects with normal occlusion and Angle Class I malocclusion during the transition to permanent dentition, and evaluate whether or not facial pattern influences on the normal development of the dentition and occlusion. Methods: Nineteen Caucasian Brazilian children were selected, with ages ranging from 6 to 8.6 years at T1 and from 10.10 to 14.2 years at T2. Their second records consisted of study dental casts and a lateral cephalometric radiograph. To obtain intermolar and intercanine widths a three-dimensional scanner unit (digitizer MicroScribe 3DX) was used connected to a microcomputer. To analyze changes at T1 and T2 Student's paired t-test was applied, whereas Spearman's correlation analysis was used to assess the relationship between measurements obtained at T1 and T2 and the facial pattern, both at 95% level of confidence. Results: The mean values found on each assessment time (T1 and T2) were statistically different (p=0.000 for LICW, p=0.001 for UICW, p=0.000 for UIMW, and p=0.046 for LIMW), regardless of the facial pattern. The anterior dimensions, UICW and LICW, increased by 3.21 mm and 1.52 mm, respectively. And the posterior dimensions, UIMW and LIMW, increased by 2.16 mm and 0.50 mm, respectively. Only UIMW showed a significant correlation with the facial pattern (p<0.01). Conclusion: There was an increase in dental arch width during the transition period from primary or mixed dentition to permanent dentition irrespective of facial pattern. Only the changes observed in the maxillary intermolar width were associated with the facial pattern.



Facial pattern, Intercanine width, Intermolar width, Transverse changes

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Dental Press Journal of Orthodontics, v. 17, n. 1, p. 66-73, 2012.