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Proceedings Paper

The study of craniofacial growth patterns using 3D laser scanning and geometric morphometrics
Author(s): Martin Friess
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Paper Abstract

Throughout childhood, braincase and face grow at different rates and therefore exhibit variable proportions and positions relative to each other. Our understanding of the direction and magnitude of these growth patterns is crucial for many ergonomic applications and can be improved by advanced 3D morphometrics. The purpose of this study is to investigate this known growth allometry using 3D imaging techniques. The geometry of the head and face of 840 children, aged 2 to 19, was captured with a laser surface scanner and analyzed statistically. From each scan, 18 landmarks were extracted and registered using General Procrustes Analysis (GPA). GPA eliminates unwanted variation due to position, orientation and scale by applying a least-squares superimposition algorithm to individual landmark configurations. This approach provides the necessary normalization for the study of differences in size, shape, and their interaction (allometry). The results show that throughout adolescence, boys and girls follow a different growth trajectory, leading to marked differences not only in size but also in shape, most notably in relative proportions of the braincase. These differences can be observed during early childhood, but become most noticeable after the age of 13 years, when craniofacial growth in girls slows down significantly, whereas growth in boys continues for at least 3 more years.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 January 2006
PDF: 5 pages
Proc. SPIE 6056, Three-Dimensional Image Capture and Applications VII, 60560J (26 January 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.654898
Show Author Affiliations
Martin Friess, Anthrotech Inc. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6056:
Three-Dimensional Image Capture and Applications VII
Brian D. Corner; Peng Li; Matthew Tocheri, Editor(s)

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