Journal Article

Analysis of tooth movement in extraction cases using three-dimensional reverse engineering technology

Bong Kuen Cha, Jae Yong Lee, Paul-Georg Jost-Brinkmann and Noriaki Yoshida

in The European Journal of Orthodontics

Published on behalf of European Orthodontics Society

Volume 29, issue 4, pages 325-331
Published in print August 2007 | ISSN: 0141-5387
Published online May 2007 | e-ISSN: 1460-2210 | DOI:
Analysis of tooth movement in extraction cases using three-dimensional reverse engineering technology

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  • Restorative Dentistry and Orthodontics


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Despite inherent errors, cephalometric superimpositions are currently the most widely used means for assessing sagittal and vertical tooth movements. The purpose of this study was to compare three-dimensional (3D) digital model superimposition with cephalometric superimposition. The material was collected from initial and final maxillary casts and lateral cephalometric radiographs of 30 patients (6 males, 24 females, mean age 17.7 years) who underwent orthodontic treatment with extraction of permanent teeth. Each pair of cephalograms was traced and superimposed according to Ricketts’ four-step method.

3D scanning of the maxillary dental casts was performed using INUS dental scanning solution®, which consists of a 3D scanner, an autoscan system, and 3D reverse modelling software. The 3D superimposition was carried out using the surface-to-surface matching (best-fit method) function of the autoscan system. The antero-posterior movement of the maxillary first molar and central incisor was evaluated cephalometrically and on 3D digital models. To determine whether any difference existed between the two measuring techniques, paired t-tests and correlation analysis were undertaken.

The results revealed no statistical differences between the mean incisor and molar movements as assessed cephalometrically or by 3D model superimposition. These findings suggest that the 3D digital orthodontic model superimposition technique used in this study is clinically as reliable as cephalometric superimposition for assessing orthodontic tooth movements.

Journal Article.  3272 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Restorative Dentistry and Orthodontics

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