Three-dimensional analysis of facial morphology in normal Japanese children as control data for cleft surgery

Tomohiro Yamada, Yoshihide Mori, Katsuhiro Minami, Katsuaki Mishima, Yuichi Tsukamoto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: This study presents an analysis of three-dimensional facial forms of normal Japanese children. Design and setting: Cross-sectional data (n = 247) were available from the Ikeda Public Health Center. Patients and participants: Three groups of children (ninety-seven 4-month-old infants, fifty-four 1.5-year-old children, and eighty 3.5-year-old children) were analyzed using a three-dimensional anthropometric technique. Main outcome measures: Three-dimensional coordinates of facial landmarks were extracted automatically from XYZ data sets and photo images of an optical surface scanner. Results: Only minor gender differences were noted. Lip height was not correlated with other facial dimensions. There was a significant correlation between upper face, nose, and mouth widths. Compared with adults, the upper face width was larger (approximately 70% to 80% of adults) than the middle and lower parts of the face. Width ratios were greater than height and depth ratios. The lip height ratio, however, was larger than the lip width ratio, and the angle of the cupid's bow was more acute in children. The angle of the nose was more obtuse, particularly in the axial plane. Conclusions: In cleft lip surgery involving young children, there may be no need to consider gender differences. Some characteristic differences exist between children and adults, however, and normal standards for children would be helpful in plastic surgery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)517-526
Number of pages10
JournalCleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sept 1 2002
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oral Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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