Background: The purpose of the present study was a three-dimensional evaluation of the spheno-occipital synchondrosis (SOS) and zygomatico-maxillary suture (ZMS) in cleft lip and palate patients versus the normal population.
Materials and Methods: In the case-control study, cone beam computed tomography scans of 153 unilateral or bilateral cleft lip and palate patients and 153 scans of healthy non-cleft individuals with skeletal Class I occlusion from 6 to 18 years were selected. Then the ZMS and SOS maturation stages were determined. Mann-whitney test, spearman correlation, repeated measurement, and bayesian transition analysis were used for statistical analysis. P-value < 0.05 was considered as significant.
Results: The result of this study showed ZMS maturation in cleft lip and palate patients was significantly earlier than control group; although, there were no statistically significant differences between case and control groups in SOS maturational stages. This study showed that in the normal population, the mean age of stage B, which is the ultimate level of favorable response to growth modification in ZMS development, is 11.50 ± 1.50 years for females and 10.79± 1.89 years for males and in cleft lip and palate patients, the mean age of stage B is 9.53 ± 1.46 years for females and 9.71 ± 1.36 years for males. There was no significant difference in mean age at any of maturational stages of ZMS and SOS between unilateral and bilateral cleft lip and palate patients (P>0.05).
Maturation of zygomatico-maxillary suture in cleft lip and palate was earlier than non-cleft children, however sphenooccipital synchondrosis did not show any significant differences in maturational stages between cleft lip and palate patients and healthy controls.