Three-dimensional evaluation of airway volume changes in two expansion activation protocols

Varghah Lotfi, Ahmed Ghoneima, Manuel Lagravere, Katherine Kula, Kelton Stewart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the airway volume changes associated with rapid maxillary expansion (RME) protocols using different activation rates. A sample of forty RME treated cases was classified into two groups according to the rate of RME activation (Group A: 0.8. mm per day and Group B: 0.5. mm per day). Three-dimensional images were obtained for each case before and three months after expansion. Dolphin imaging software was used to identify landmarks and calculate airway volumes. Intraclass correlation coefficient was used to confirm reliability and Wilcoxon signed rank tests were used for comparison between the initial and final measurements within each group and between groups. Significant increase in the nasal cavity volume for both groups was observed (P <. 0.0001 and P = 0.001 for groups A and B respectively). The increase in nasopharynx volume was significant in the group with a more rapid activation rate (P = 0.0006). Significant differences between the two groups in post-treatment changes were detected in the nasal cavity volume (P <. 0.0001), nasopharynx volume (P = 0.0035), and soft palate area (P = 0.0081). A more rapid activation rate results in a higher volume increase for the nasal cavity and nasopharynx than a slower activation rate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalInternational Orthodontics
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2018


  • Airway volume
  • Expansion protocol
  • Posterior crossbite
  • Rapid maxillary expansion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthodontics

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