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Background: This study aimed to assess the bone structure supporting teeth near the cleft region in individuals with a unilateral cleft lip and palate. The study also aimed to compare these measurements with the corresponding teeth on the non-cleft side using cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT).
Materials and Methods: Thirty individuals with unilateral cleft lip and/or palate had their CBCT scans analyzed. Cleft-adjacent teeth had their alveolar bone support measured and compared to non-cleft-adjacent teeth. The buccal bone plate thickness was measured at 0-, 1-, 2-, and 4-mm depths, as was the distance between the cementoenamel junction (CEJ) and the alveolar crest (AC) on the buccal side.
Results: The central incisor's bony support was notably thinner in cleft regions compared to non-cleft areas at apical depths of zero and one millimeter. The CEJ-AC space for central teeth near the cleft was significantly greater than that in non-cleft regions. Similar trends were observed for canine teeth at 0, 1, 2, and 4 millimeters, resembling the results for central teeth at 0 and 1 millimeters. The CEJ-AC space for canine teeth adjacent to the cleft was significantly developed compared to non-cleft regions.
Conclusion: Individuals with a unilateral cleft lip and palate exhibited diminished alveolar bone support for teeth near the cleft area compared to controls. This discrepancy could lead to future complications, underscoring the importance of professional dental care to maintain optimal periodontal health in these patients.
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