Evidence supporting the use of cone-beam computed tomography in orthodontics

Olivier J. C. van Vlijmen, Mette A. R. Kuijpers, Stefaan J. Berge, Jan G. J. H. Schols, Thomas J. J. Maal, Hero Breuning, Anne Marie Kuijpers-Jagtman*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

68 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background. The authors conducted a systematic review of cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) applications in orthodontics and evaluated the level of evidence to determine whether the use of CBCT is justified in orthodontics.

Types of Studies Reviewed. The authors identified articles by searching the Cochrane Library, PubMed, MEDLINE, Embase, Scopus and Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature databases. They searched the articles' reference lists manually for additional Articles and had no language limitations. They did not search the gray literature. Inclusion criteria were CBCT use in orthodontics and that the participants be human. The lowest level of evidence accepted for inclusion was a case series with five or more participants. The authors evaluated the studies' methodological quality according to 13 criteria related to study design, measurements and statistical analysis.

Results. The authors identified 550 articles, and 50 met the inclusion criteria. Study topics included temporary anchorage devices, cephalometry, combined orthodontic and surgical treatment, airway measurements, root resorption and tooth impactions, and cleft lip and palate. The methodological quality averaged 53 percent (range, 15-77 percent) of the maximum score.

Clinical Implications. The authors found no high-quality evidence regarding the benefits of CBCT use in orthodontics. Limited evidence shows that CBCT offers better diagnostic potential, leads to better treatment planning or results in better treatment outcome than do conventional imaging modalities. Only the results of studies on airway diagnostics provided sound scientific data suggesting that CBCT use has added value. The additional radiation exposure should be weighed against possible benefits of CBCT, which have not been supported in the literature. In future studies, investigators should evaluate the effects of CBCT on treatment procedures, progression and outcome quantitatively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)241-252
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of the american dental association
Volume143
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar-2012
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Review
  • cone-beam computed tomography
  • three-dimensional imaging
  • orthodontics
  • maxillofacial
  • 3-DIMENSIONAL CEPHALOMETRIC ANALYSIS
  • RAPID MAXILLARY EXPANSION
  • ALVEOLAR BONE
  • PANORAMIC RADIOGRAPHY
  • MAXILLOFACIAL REGION
  • PERIODONTAL HEALTH
  • PARAMEDIAN PALATE
  • CORTICAL BONE
  • CBCT DEVICES
  • DOSIMETRY

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