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J Forensic Dent Sci. 2018 Jan-Apr;10(1):18-21. doi: 10.4103/jfo.jfds_15_17.

Validation of the efficacy of age assessment by the Brothwell tooth wear chart, using skulls of known age at death.

Author information

Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Zliten Dental School, Al-Asmarya Islamic University, Zliten, Libya.
Department of Dentistry, Ministry of Health, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Department of General and Inorganic Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy, The University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Targu Mures, Romania.
Edinburgh Dental Institute, The University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK.



The present study aims to validate the efficacy of age assessment by the Brothwell tooth wear chart, uniquely using skulls of recorded known age at death.

Materials and Methods:

Fifty Chinese skulls, of known age recorded at death, ranging from 16 to 62 years, were used. All the skulls were anonymized laid out, numbered 1-50, and using randomized tables. A 70-mm, ×3 magnification glass with light (Rolson, Ruscombe, Twyford, Berkshire, United Kingdom) was used to evaluate tooth wear patterns, and the age assessed using newly devised "age calculator" based on the Brothwell Chart.


The recorded age at death versus the estimated age derived from the Brothwell chart was statistically compared the weighted kappa score = 0.877, suggestive of a "very good" strength of agreement.


The Brothwell chart, based on tooth wear, can be used as a consistent method of age assessment, allowing for easier and more rapid data collection with no loss of overall accuracy.


Age estimation; Brothwell chart; forensic odontology; forensic science; tooth wear

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