Three-dimensional analysis of tooth movements after palatal miniscrew-supported molar distalization

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The aim of this prospective clinical study was to evaluate the dentoalveolar effects of a palatal miniscrew-supported molar distalization appliance using a 3-dimensional reverse engineering method.


This study sample comprised 21 patients at an average age of 13.6 years with a bilateral Class II molar relationship. Distalization was performed using skeletal anchorage. Dental casts were obtained just before treatment and after appliance removal, and they were scanned with a 3-dimensional dental scanner. The digital dental cast images were aligned. Four points and 2 lines were determined on each tooth, and the correlations between tooth movements and the linear and angular changes were analyzed 3 dimensionally.


In the sagittal direction, the first molars showed a mean linear movement of 4.10 ± 1.57 mm, with distal tipping of 11.02°; the central incisors showed a mean distal movement of 0.95 ± 0.40 mm, with retroclination of 1.59 ± 0.59°. In the vertical direction, only the first molars showed intrusion, with a mean value of –0.59 ± 0.50 mm. Rotation of the first molars was 4.92° ± 3.09°. The second molars had the greatest rotation. The highest correlation among tooth movements was found between the first and second molars.


Through support from the anterior palatal region, the maxillary first molars were distalized without anchorage loss. Furthermore, movement was observed in all 3 planes of space with reduction from the posterior to the anterior in the maxillary arch.

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