Possibilities to use computed tomography in orthodontics and its link to digital models

Possibilities to use computed tomography in orthodontics and its link to digital models

Simona Rakauskaitė1

 Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Faculty of Dentistry, 2014m.


In nowadays orthodontics computed tomography is an integrated test method for diagnosing of different skeletal and dental pathologies. The advanced digital technologies in orthodontics allow to transferring head skeletal and dental information into virtual space. A conjunction of computed tomography images and 3D digital models allow creating digital models of a patient’s head in order to make diagnostic and treatment planning stage more easy.

Aim: to discuss use of cone-beam CT and its conjunction with 3D digital models.

Objectives:  to identify use of conical cone-beam CT and application in orthodontics; to overview and to compare plaster models scanning methods; to discuss the ways to connect cone-beam CT scans and laser scanned models

Methodology: the following academic databases have been used herein: “pubmed“, “science direct“, “medline“, “google“. The total number of academic articles: 48 (1991-2012). Main key words: “cone – beam“; “CBCT“; “digital models“; “3D radiograms”; “laser-scanned dental images”; “structured light“; “laser scanners“.

Results: the main opportunities of cone-beam CT use (for monitoring of tooth development, restrictions on tooth movement, airways passing, identification of impacted (tusk) teeth localization, for skull skeleton morphology analysis ), have been pointed out together with the comparison of plaster models scanning methods – laser and structured light, and the main modern digital models and CT images conjunction ways (manual intra oral marks  (titanium spheres) and extra oral hot gutta-percha marks) have been discussed.

Conclusions:  1. In nowadays orthodontics the CT is used for diagnosing of different skeletal and dental pathologies, also for identification of canal restrictions of orthodontic tooth movement and skull skeleton morphologic abnormalities. 2. Laser and structured light are broadly used for plaster model scanning 3. In order to connect the CT images and 3D models the scholars have used intra oral and extra oral marks. However, the produced models haven’t been used practically yet because of a complex performance techniques and financial expenses.