ABSTRACT: In this retrospective study with 3-dimensional computed tomography, we evaluated airway volume, soft-palate area, and soft-tissue thickness changes before and after rapid maxillary expansion in adolescents. Another purpose was to determine whether rapid maxillary expansion caused changes in the palatal and mandibular planes and facial height.
The sample comprised 20 patients who were treated with rapid maxillary expansion. Spiral tomographs were taken before and 3 months after treatment. Reliability studies were performed, and then volumetric, soft-palate area, soft-tissue thickness, and cephalometric parameters were compared on the tomographs. Intraclass correlations were performed on the reliability measurements. Before and after rapid maxillary expansion measurements were compared by using Wilcoxon signed rank tests. Spearman correlation coefficients were used to evaluate the associations among the airway volume, soft-palate area, soft-tissue thickness, and cephalometric measurements. Significance was accepted at P ≤0.05 for all tests.
Intraclass correlation coefficients were ≥0.90 for all reliability measures. Significant increases from before to after rapid maxillary expansion were found in nasal cavity and nasopharynx volumes, and for the measurements of MP-SN, S-PNS, N-ANS, ANS-Me, and N-Me. Significant positive correlations existed between changes in PP-SN and N-ANS, and ANS-Me and N-Me.
Rapid maxillary expansion causes significant increases in nasal cavity volume, nasopharynx volume, anterior and posterior facial heights, and palatal and mandibular planes.
American journal of orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics: official publication of the American Association of Orthodontists, its constituent societies, and the American Board of Orthodontics 05/2012; 141(5):618-26. · 1.33 Impact Factor