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New research on age-related skeletal changes in the middle face

New research on age-related skeletal changes in the middle face
A bone resorption center located in the posterior maxilla seems to lead to age-related changes in the skeleton of the median face. According to a study published in December 2018 in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (PRS), these changes occur regardless of sex, at different ages and in different places in the skeleton. The authors reported that the results help establish a time sequence indicating when treatment options may have better and more lasting results.

An international group of researchers studied cranial tomographic images of 157 Russian Caucasian men and women. There were 10 men and women in each decade, aged 20 to 29 and 80 to 89, as well as eight men and nine women in the 90 to 98 age group.

The authors report several changes that occur regardless of gender.

Viewed from the right, the researchers noticed a change in facial angles which they summarized as a rotation of the skeleton of the median region in a clockwise direction , in particular:

  • An increase in the angle of the orbital floor, with the largest increase, of 7.01 degrees, occurring between 60 and 69 years of age.
  • A decrease in the maxillary angle, with the largest decrease, of -1.76 degrees, between 40 and 49 years of age.
  • An increase in the angle of the palate, with the largest increase, of 2.66 degrees, between 50 and 59 years of age.
  • An increase in vomer angle, with the largest increase, of 10.36 degrees, occurring between 30 and 39 years of age.

They report that, with age, the pterygoid angle decreases, which represents a counterclockwise rotation of the bony structures posterior to the maxilla.

Researchers have found that anthropometric measurements, such as the width of the orbit and the height of the midface, are smaller in women, but that their sex decreases with age.

The rotational movement of the facial skeleton previously postulated against the cranial base does not seem to be the engine of the changes observed by the authors in this study, according to the authors: [19459010 ]

Based on the results of our investigation, it may be more appropriate to describe facial bone changes as an aging-related event caused by bone turnover, with consequent changes in angles and facial widths regardless of sex in the Caucasian population ”, write the authors. .

Noting how these results could be translated into practice, the authors point out that the 2016 procedural statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons show that patients aged 40 to 54 years had the highest number of minimally invasive treatments of all survey groups. This seems logical given that the researchers found that these are the years in which the change in the maxillary angle is the most significant – a change that significantly affects the shape of the appearance of the middle face.

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