Radiographic interproximal angulations: Implications for rotational panoramic radiography

William C. Scarfe, Pirkka Nummikoski, William D. McDavid, Ulf Welander, Gunilla Tronje

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Axial radiographs were taken on 160 subjects at the screening clinic of the Dental School, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Intermeatal and midsagittal lines, together with coordinate axes and polynomical curves that represent the average dental arch form, were overlaid on each radiograph. Coordinate references for interproximal tangents at 3154 contacts along the average dental arch form were digitized and angulations between the arch form and midsagittal plane calculated. Interproximal angulations at the average arch form were found to vary greatly but the average fluctuated around 90 degrees over the length of the arch. Optimal beam angulations were shown to be considerably different from central ray angulations of current panoramic machines, and although most machines demonstrated favorable interproximal beam angulation in the anterior region, discrepancy in the premolar region ranged from 15 degrees to over 40 degrees. Overall the OrthOralix SD (Gendex Dental Systems, S.r.l., Monza, Italy) orthogonal projection and PM 2002 CC (Planmeca Inc. Helsinki, Finland) deviate least from optimal interproximal angulation over most of the dental arch. However, the Planmeca gives a better angulation in the canine/premolar region, whereas the OP5 10 (Palomex Instrumentarium Corp., Helsinki, Finland) is comparable with the OrthOralix SD in the molar region.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)664-672
Number of pages9
JournalOral Surgery, Oral Medicine, Oral Pathology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Dentistry(all)


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