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Orthod Fr. 2011 Dec;82(4):347-58. doi: 10.1051/orthodfr/2011143. Epub 2011 Nov 23.

[Is the ethnic factor an orthodontic therapeutic instructor?].

[Article in French]

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  • 1Departement d'Orthopedie Dento-Faciale, Universite de Lyon I, Lyon, France.


Because different groups in human society view beauty in stereotypical terms of their own ethnicity, orthodontists should study the concept of facial beauty with scientific rigor. Is it time for us to re-examine the assumption that the original cephalometric esthetic norms based on samples of North Americans can be applied to other populations? Many cephalometric analyses of Afro-American and Asian subjects who had not received orthodontic treatment but whose occlusions were normal have shown that their esthetic criteria were far different from those of the Caucasian North American sample. The Afro-Americans and Asians share a principal ethnic facial characteristic of bi-maxillary alveolo-dental protrusion with a reduced naso-labial angle. Afro-Americans frequently have maxillae in an anterior position with mandibles in similar or retruded positions. Asians appear to have similar cutaneous profiles but group skeletal profiles differ: Japanese often have more retruded maxillae; Chinese often have protruded maxillae and retruded mandibles. Koreans tend to have characteristics resembling those of Japanese groups. So it would seem necessary for the specialty of orthodontics to establish specific data of facial characteristics that reflect the ethnic origin of potential patients in order for specialists to make accurate and appropriate esthetic diagnoses.

© EDP Sciences, SFODF, 2011.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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