Arch-width changes in extraction vs nonextraction treatments in matched Class I borderline malocclusions

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The aims of this study were to identify a sample of borderline Class I extraction and nonextraction patients and to investigate posttreatment changes in arch-width and perimeter measurements.


A parent sample of 580 Class I patients was subjected to discriminant analysis, and a borderline subsample of 62 patients, 31 treated with extraction of 4 first premolars and 31 treated without extractions, was obtained. The patients' plaster casts were digitally scanned, and the maxillary and mandibular intercanine and intermolar widths and perimeters were assessed.


The extraction group showed increases in maxillary and mandibular intercanine widths (P <0.001) and decreases in mandibular intermolar width and in maxillary and mandibular perimeters (P <0.001). The nonextraction group showed increases in all 4 arch-width measurements (P ≤0.003), whereas the maxillary and mandibular perimeters were maintained. The posttreatment differences between the 2 groups showed significant differences in the maxillary (P <0.001) and mandibular intermolar widths (P <0.001). Also, the comparison of the arch perimeters between the 2 treatment groups showed adjusted differences of −8.51 mm (P <0.001) and −8.44 mm (P <0.001) for the maxillary and mandibular arches, respectively. The intercanine widths showed no changes between the 2 treatment groups.


Borderline Class I patients treated with extraction of 4 first premolars had decreased maxillary and mandibular intermolar and perimeter measurements compared with nonextraction patients. The maxillary and mandibular intercanine widths showed no significant difference between the 2 treatment groups.

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