Automated 3-Dimensional Airway Analysis from Cone-Beam Computed Tomography Data

Authors: Stephen A. Schendel, MD, DDS,* and David Hatcher, DDS, MSc, MRCD

Source: Journal of Oral Maxillofacial Surgery, Volume 68, Issue 3, Pages 696-701, March 2010.

Evaluation of the airway using CT data is 3D and more precise than using traditional cephalometric radiographs but requires considerable manual manipulation of the data to achieve objective measurements. Medical CT has been used to study the airway changes by gender and age and after jaw surgery. A semi-assisted computer program was developed (3dMDvultus software, 3dMD, Atlanta, GA) to quickly and reliably calculate the measurements, area, and volume of the airway. The results are displayed virtually. The present study was designed to determine the accuracy and precision of the 3dMDVultus software using an airway phantom in different orientations as a test standard.

Results. The phantom airway volume was computed by measurement to be 50.01 cm3 (radius 1.262 cm, length 10.06 cm). The airway volume calculated by the weight method was 50.2 and 50.12054g on the 2 scales. The software consistently calculated the phantom volume as 49 _ 0.15 cm3. No significant differences were found between the airway measurements obtained using the 3dMDVultus semi-assisted software program generated from the CBCT data and those obtained using the manual
calculation methods generated from the CT scans (P _ .975).

To obtain the complete article, please visit joms.org at http://www.joms.org/article/S0278-2391%2809%2901437-2/abstract.

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