Utility of panoramic radiography for identification of the pubertal growth period

Introduction: Our aim in this study was to investigate the association between dental mineralization stages and the periods of the pubertal growth spurt (PGS). Methods: The sample included panoramic and hand-wrist radiographs from 491 subjects (222 boys, 269 girls) aged 7 to 17 years. Dental development was rated, and skeletal maturation was evaluated. The relevant associations were investigated by analysis of ordinal multinomial logistic regression. Results: The second molar (odds ratio [OR] 5 4.34) and the first premolar (OR 5 2.45) were the best growth predictors for girls. For boys, the second molar (OR 5 6.80), second premolar (OR 5 2.41), and canine (OR 5 3.21) proved to be the best predictors. Stages D and E of the second molar for girls, and stages E and F for boys, corresponded to the onset of the accelerated growth spurt. Stage F of the second molar for girls and stage G for boys corresponded to the peak of the PGS. At the end of the PGS, most teeth had already attained apical closure. In girls, however, most second molars were found at stage G. Conclusions: An association exists between the dental mineralization stages and the periods of the PGS, especially for second molars. Panoramic radiographs can be used as the first diagnostic tool to estimate the pubertal growth period. (Am J Orthod Dentofacial Orthop 2016;149:509-15)

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