Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
Objective: The aim of this study was to explore the anatomical considerations of children with unilateral cleft lip and palate (UCLP) for the purpose of placing orthodontic miniplates for maxillary protraction. Materials and Methods: Cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) images of 41 patients with UCLP (18 females and 23 males with a mean age of 9.8) and 36 (19 females and 17 males with a mean age of 9.9) age-matched controls were assessed in this retrospective study. Multiple linear measurements were taken to evaluate the bone thickness of the infrazygomatic crest region (IZCR), buccal alveolar bone, and inferior portion of the zygoma. In addition, the width of ten craniofacial and circummaxillary sutures were measured in the coronal, axial, and sagittal plane. Furthermore, the maturation level of the zygomaticomaxillary sutures (ZMS) were identified. Lastly, the volume of the maxillary sinuses was calculated. Statistical comparisons were made for each of the variables between the control and UCLP groups. Results: There were no statistically significant differences of age and gender distributions between the groups. The greatest average bone thickness was found in the zygoma region in both groups, ranging from about 7 to 9 mm. The mean IZCR thickness did not exceed 3 mm in patients with UCLP. Analysis of the maxillary sinus revealed no significant differences between the two groups. The mean suture width of the right pterygomaxillary, left ZMS, and internasal sutures were larger in control group. The mean suture width of the right and left frontomaxillary, intermaxillary, left nasomaxillary and midpalatal sutures were larger in UCLP group. All patients were either at Stage A or Stage B of the maturation level of the ZMS and Stage B made up the majority in both groups. Conclusions: Patients with UCLP have sufficient bone thickness to accommodate miniscrews for fixation of miniplates in the zygoma but may not have enough in the infrazygomatic crest. The maxillary sinus volumes were similar between UCLP and the control group, but there were some significant differences in suture width between the control and UCLP group.