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Am J Orthod Dentofacial Orthop. 2003 Jul;124(1):13-29.

Condyle-fossa modifications and muscle interactions during Herbst treatment, Part 2. Results and conclusions.

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  • 1Department of Orthodontics, College of Dentistry, New York University, New York, NY, USA.

Erratum in

  • Am J Orthod Dentofacial Orthop. 2003 Sep;124(3):243.


Herbst appliances were activated progressively in growing nonhuman primates, and the results were compared with primate and human controls. The methods and materials of this research are explained in Part 1 of this study. The results are discussed here in Part 2. All experimental subjects developed large super Class I malocclusions, the result of many factors including posterior movement of the maxilla and the maxillary teeth, an increased horizontal component of condylar growth, and anterior displacement of the mandible and the mandibular teeth. The growth modification measured in the glenoid fossa was in an inferior and anterior direction. Restriction of the downward and backward growth of the fossa observed in the control subjects might additionally contribute to the overall super Class I malocclusion. Clinically, these combined effects could be significant at the fossa. The restriction of local temporal bone (fossa) growth cannot be observed clinically; thus, these results might also clarify some Class II correction effects that cannot be explained with functional appliances. Differences in the area and maximum thickness of new bone formation in the glenoid fossa and in condylar growth were statistically significant. The bony changes in the condyle and the glenoid fossa were correlated with decreased postural electromyographic activity during the experimental period. Results from permanently implanted electromyographic sensors demonstrated that lateral pterygoid muscle hyperactivity was not associated with condyle-glenoid fossa growth modification with functional appliances, and that other factors, such as reciprocal stretch forces and subsequent transduction along the fibrocartilage between the displaced condyle and fossa, might play a more significant role in new bone formation. These results support the growth relativity concept.

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