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VOLUME 22 , ISSUE 3 ( March, 2021 ) > List of Articles


Changes in Airway Dimensions Following Non-extraction Clear Aligner Therapy in Adult Patients with Mild-to-moderate Crowding

Suzzane Horani, Tarek El-Bialy, Abdul Basir Barmak, Paul Emile Rossouw, Dimitrios Michelogiannakis

Keywords : Airway dimensions, Clear aligner therapy, Cone-beam computed tomography, Invisalign, Non-extraction therapy, Retrospective study

Citation Information : Horani S, El-Bialy T, Barmak AB, Rossouw PE, Michelogiannakis D. Changes in Airway Dimensions Following Non-extraction Clear Aligner Therapy in Adult Patients with Mild-to-moderate Crowding. J Contemp Dent Pract 2021; 22 (3):224-230.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10024-3037

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published Online: 00-03-2021

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2021; Jaypee Brothers Medical Publishers (P) Ltd.


Aim and objective: This retrospective study aimed to assess changes in airway dimensions with non-extraction clear-aligner-therapy (NE-CAT) in adult patients with mild-to-moderate crowding. Materials and methods: Cone-beam computed tomographic images were evaluated for 24 adults (16 females and 8 males) with mild-to-moderate crowding, and Class I or mild skeletal Class II malocclusion before and after NE-CAT. Cross-sectional and volumetric airway measurements were performed at the level of the nasal cavity, upper pharyngeal airway space (UAS), and lower pharyngeal airway space (LAS). The Frankfort-mandibular plane angle (FMA), point A-nasion-point B (ANB) angle, and intermolar width were measured. A paired t-test was used to assess changes in airway measurements. Linear regression analyses were performed to identify predictors of the pharyngeal airway volume change at the levels of the UAS and LAS. Results: There was a significant decrease (p = 0.004) in UAS mean volume (486.63 ± 752.73 mm3), LAS mean volume (p = 0.006), and cross-sectional airway area (p = 0.022) (1536.92 ± 2512.02 mm3 and 34.66 ± 69.35 mm2, respectively) with NE-CAT. The mean airway volume of the nasal cavity, mean cross-sectional airway areas of the nasal cavity and UAS, and mean minimum cross-sectional pharyngeal airway area did not change significantly with NE-CAT. Changes in pharyngeal airway volume were not significantly associated with patients’ age, gender, treatment duration, pretreatment ANB angle, and changes in FMA and maxillary first intermolar width with NE-CAT. Conclusion: Significant changes in the pharyngeal airway dimensions of the UAS and LAS with NE-CAT in adult patients with mild-to-moderate crowding were identified. Clinical significance: The results of the present study show that NE-CAT is not associated with an improvement in airway dimensions in adults with mild to moderate crowding.

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