Longitudinal eruptive and posteruptive tooth movements, studied on oblique and lateral cephalograms with implants

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The purpose of this study was to investigate the eruptive and posteruptive tooth displacements of untreated growing subjects longitudinally and the potential connections between posteruptive displacement of the maxillary and mandibular first molars and skeletal facial growth.


The sample comprised 11 series of right 45° oblique cephalograms and lateral cephalograms of untreated children with metallic implants of the Björk type obtained from the archives of a growth study. Cephalograms generated at approximately 2-year intervals between the ages of 8.5 and 16 years were selected and traced. Superimpositions of serial tracings of oblique cephalograms on stable intraosseous implants were made to determine the displacements of buccal segment teeth in both arches, and superimpositions of serial tracings of lateral cephalograms were used to evaluate growth of the jaws.


Continuous mesial tipping of the maxillary molars was observed from 8.5 to 16 years of age, averaging 8.2° ± 5.5° for the first molars and 18.3°± 8.5° for the second molars. Compared with the maxillary molars, the mandibular first molars showed less change in angulation except in the later mixed dentition when more than half of the subjects had accelerated forward tipping of the first molar in the late mixed dentition associated with migration into the leeway space. Average amounts of cumulative eruption from 8.5 to 16 years of age were 12.1 ± 2.1 mm downward and 3.8 ± 1.7 mm forward for the maxillary first molar. The mandibular first molar showed 8.6 ± 2.3 mm of eruption and 4.4 ± 1.9 mm of mesial migration. Peak velocity of vertical eruption of the maxillary and mandibular first molars corresponded to the skeletal vertical growth spurt. The maxillary canines and first premolars showed remarkable and continuous uprighting migration during eruption, averaging 9.5° ± 5.0° and 10.5° ± 6.7°, respectively. However, when they erupted into the occlusion, their changes in angulation reverted to forward tipping. The same tendency was also found in the mandibular canines and first premolars.


Remarkable eruption and migration occur to the teeth of both arches during childhood and adolescence. Rates of first molar eruption during adolescence follow the general pattern of somatic growth. We infer that maintaining the original distal crown angulation of the maxillary molars may be an effective protocol for preservation of anchorage.

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