Validity and reproducibility of cephalometric measurements obtained from digital photographs of analogue headfilms

Simonas Grybauskas, Irena Balciuniene, Jānis Vētra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
5 Downloads (Pure)


The emerging market of digital cephalographs and computerized cephalometry is overwhelming the need to examine the advantages and drawbacks of manual cephalometry, meanwhile, small offices continue to benefit from the economic efficacy and ease of use of analogue cephalograms. The use of modern cephalometric software requires import of digital cephalograms or digital capture of analogue data: scanning and digital photography. The validity of digital photographs of analogue headfilms rather than original headfilms in clinical practice has not been well established. Digital photography could be a fast and inexpensive method of digital capture of analogue cephalograms for use in digital cephalometry. AIM: The objective of this study was to determine the validity and reproducibility of measurements obtained from digital photographs of analogue headfilms in lateral cephalometry. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Analogue cephalometric radiographs were performed on 15 human dry skulls. Each of them was traced on acetate paper and photographed three times independently. Acetate tracings and digital photographs were digitized and analyzed in cephalometric software. Linear regression model, paired t-test intergroup analysis and coefficient of repeatability were used to assess validity and reproducibility for 63 angular, linear and derivative measurements. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS: 54 out of 63 measurements were determined to have clinically acceptable reproducibility in the acetate tracing group as well as 46 out of 63 in the digital photography group. The worst reproducibility was determined for measurements dependent on landmarks of incisors and poorly defined outlines, majority of them being angular measurements. Validity was acceptable for all measurements, and although statistically significant differences between methods existed for as many as 15 parameters, they appeared to be clinically insignificant being smaller than 1 unit of measurement. Validity was acceptable for 59 of 63 measurements obtained from digital photographs, substantiating the use of digital photography for headfilm capture and computer-aided cephalometric analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)114-120
Number of pages7
JournalStomatologija / issued by public institution "Odontologijos studija" ... [et al.]
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2007


  • cephalometry
  • reproducibility
  • dry skul
  • acetate tracing
  • digital photography

Field of Science*

  • 3.1 Basic medicine

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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