In Vitro Comparison of the Effect of Different Slice Thicknesses on the Accuracy of Linear Measurements on Cone Beam Computed Tomography Images in Implant Sites

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Background and Aims

Use of dental implants in edentulous patients has become a common treatment modality. Treatment of such implants requires radiographic evaluation, and in most cases, several different imaging techniques are necessary to evaluate the height, width, and structure of the bone at the implant site. In the current study, an attempt was made to evaluate the accuracy of measurements on cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) images with different slice thicknesses so that accurate data can be collected for proper clinical applications.

Materials and Methods

In the present in vitro study, 11 human dry mandibles were used. The width and height of bone at the central, canine, and molar teeth areas were measured on the left and right sides by using digital calipers (as gold standard) and on CBCT images with 0.5-, 1-, 2-, 3-, 5-, and 10-mm slice thicknesses. Data were analyzed with SPSS 16, using paired t-test, Tukey test, and inter class correlation.


Data were collected by evaluation of 11 skulls and 63 samples on the whole. There were no significant differences in bone width in any area (P > 0.05). There were significant differences in bone height in the central and molar teeth areas (P = 0.02). The measurements were not significant only at 4-mm slice thickness option and 5-mm slice thickness option for height compared with the gold standard (P = 0.513 and 0.173, respectively). The results did not show any significant differences between the observers (P = 0.329).


The highest measurement accuracy of CBCT software program was observed at 4-mm slices for bone width and 5-mm slice thickness for bone height.

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