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Am J Orthod Dentofacial Orthop. 2011 Apr;139(4 Suppl):e377-89. doi: 10.1016/j.ajodo.2009.10.039.

Cross-sectional human mandibular morphology as assessed in vivo by cone-beam computed tomography in patients with different vertical facial dimensions.

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  • 1Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, School of Dentistry, University of California at San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94143-0438, USA.



The goal of this study was to look at mandibular cortical bone in live patients using cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) to determine differences in cortical plate thicknesses and mandibular cross-sectional height and width in patients with different vertical facial dimensions.


A total of 111 scanned patients were used. Of these subjects, 43 were included in the average vertical facial dimension group (average face), 34 in the high vertical facial group (long face), and 34 in the low vertical facial group (square short face). Cross-sectional slices of the mandible were developed with the cone-beam scans to evaluate the cortical bone between the dentition at 13 locations. Each section was then measured at 8 sites, which included 1 height and 2 width measures of the cross-sectional area and 5 cortical plate thicknesses. An analysis of variance (ANOVA) with a posthoc Bonferroni statistical analysis was used with a significance level of P  ≤0.0167.


The long-face group had slightly more narrow cortical bone than the other 2 facial groups at a few selected sites of the mandible. The height of the cross-sectional area of the mandible in the long-face group was shorter posteriorly than in the other 2 groups and became greater toward the symphysis.


Mandibular height and width differed more than cortical bone thickness among the 3 types of subjects with different vertical facial dimensions, but statistically significant differences were evident is some sites for cortical bone thickness.

Copyright © 2011 American Association of Orthodontists. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

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