Detecting reduced bone mineral density from dental radiographs using statistical shape models

Philip D. Allen, J. Graham, D. J J Farnell, E. J. Harrison, Reinhilde Jacobs, K. Karayianni, Christina Lindh, P. F. van der Stelt, K. Horner, Hugh Devlin

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    We describe a novel method of estimating reduced bone mineral density (BMD) from dental panoramic tomograms (DPTs), which show the entire mandible. Careful expert width measurement of the inferior mandibular cortex has been shown to be predictive of BMD in hip and spine osteopenia and osteoporosis. We have implemented a method of automatic measurement of the width by active shape model search, using as training data 132 DPTs of female subjects whose BMD has been established by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. We demonstrate that widths measured after fully automatic search are significantly correlated with BMD, and exhibit less variability than manual measurements made by different experts. The correlation is highest towards the lateral region of the mandible, in a position different from that previously employed for manual width measurement. An receiver-operator characterstic (ROC) analysis for identifying osteopenia (T
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)601-610
    Number of pages9
    JournalIEEE Transactions on Information Technology in Biomedicine
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - Nov 2007


    • Active Shape Model
    • Bone Mineral Density
    • Dental Panoramic Tomogram
    • Inferior Mandibular Cortex
    • Osteopenia
    • Osteoporosis
    • Segmentation


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