Edition V15N03 | Year 2010 | Editorial Article | Pages 52 to 61
Objective: The purpose of this study was to compare the dimensions of the nasopharynx and the skeletal featuresevaluated by cephalometric examinationof individuals with different morphological patterns. Methods: Were used cephalometric radiographs of 90 patients of both genders, aged 12 to 16 years, which were divided into three distinct groups, according to their morphological patterns, i.e., brachyfacials, mesofacials and dolichofacials. Measurements were performed of specific nasopharyngeal regions (ad1-Ptm, ad2-Ptm, ad1-Ba, ad2-S0, (ad1-ad2-S0-Ba-ad1/Ptm-S0-Ba-Ptm) X 100, and Ptm-Ba), and relative to the facial skeletal patterns. Results: Dolichofacial patients were found to have smaller sagittal depth of the bony nasopharynx (Ptm-Ba) and lower nasopharyngeal airway depth (ad1-Ptm and ad2-Ptm). Arguably, these differences are linked to a relatively more posterior position of the maxilla, typical of these patients. No differences were found, however, in the soft tissue thickness of the posterior nasopharyngeal wall (ad1-Ba and ad2-S0), or their proportion in the whole area bounded by the nasopharynx [(ad1-ad2-S0-Ba-ad1/Ptm-S0-Ba-Ptm) X 100]. Conclusions: We therefore suggest that the excessively vertical facial features found in dolichofacial patients may be the result, among other factors, of nasopharyngeal airway obstruction, since such dimensions were shown to be smaller in dolichofacials.