Quantification of maxillary dental midline deviation in 2D photographs: methodology trial

Abdulghani M. Alarabi (Lead / Corresponding author), Gavin F. Revie, David R. Bearn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
367 Downloads (Pure)


Introduction: Discrepancy of the upper dental midline to the facial midline plays an important role in smile aesthetic assessment. This study presents different reference points to quantify the deviation of upper dental midline to the facial midline in 2D frontal photographs. The aim was to find the most accurate, precise, and practical reference points to measure dental midline discrepancy in 2D photographs.

Methodology: A modified headset with a protractor was developed in order to achieve photographs in nine standardised head positions. Six reference points were used to detect the facial midline in the 2D photographs (eyebrows “EB”, inner-canthus of the eyes “ICE”, alae of the nose “AN”, columella “C”, nasolabial folds “NLF”, and the philtrum “PH”). The deviation of the maxillary dental midline from the facial midline was measured and compared with clinical measurements.

Statistical analysis: Standard deviations (SD), Root Mean Square Error (RMSE), Method of Moments’ Estimator (MME), 2-way repeated measures ANOVA, and multi-level linear model were used to estimate the true errors.
Results: The different reference points responded significantly differently to changes in head position and all showed measurement errors, which increased with greater head rotation. Alae of the nose showed the least measurement error and the greatest precision in all head positions.

Conclusion: The alae of the nose are the recommended reference points to identify the facial midline in order to quantify dental midline deviation from frontal photographs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)312-323
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Orthodontics
Issue number2
Early online date22 Apr 2019
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019


  • 2D photograph
  • Dental midline
  • Facial landmarks
  • Facial midline
  • Measurement error
  • Midline deviation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthodontics


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