Three-dimensional gender differences in facial form of children in the North East of England



Bugaighis I, Mattick CR, Tiddeman B, Hobson R.


Eur J Orthod. 2013 Jun;35(3):295-304. doi: 10.1093/ejo/cjr033. Epub 2011 Apr 29.


The aim of the prospective cross-sectional morphometric study was to explore three dimensional (3D) facial shape and form (shape plus size) variation within and between 8- and 12-year-old Caucasian children; 39 males age-matched with 41 females. The 3D images were captured using a stereophotogrammeteric system, and facial form was recorded by digitizing 39 anthropometric landmarks for each scan. The x, y, z coordinates of each landmark were extracted and used to calculate linear and angular measurements. 3D landmark asymmetry was quantified using Generalized Procrustes Analysis (GPA) and an average face was constructed for each gender. The average faces were superimposed and differences were visualized and quantified. Shape variations were explored using GPA and PrincipalComponent Analysis. Analysis of covariance and Pearson correlation coefficients were used to explore gender differences and to determine any correlation between facial measurements and height or weight. Multivariate analysis was used to ascertain differences in facial measurements or 3D landmark asymmetry. There were no differences in height or weight between genders. There was a significant positive correlation between facial measurements and height and weight and statistically significant differences in linear facial width measurements between genders. These differences were related to the larger size of males rather than differences in shape. There were no age- or gender-linked significant differences in 3D landmark asymmetry. Shape analysis confirmed similarities between both males and females for facial shape and form in 8- to 12-year-old children. Any differences found were related to differences in facial size rather than shape.

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Link/DOI: 10.1093/ejo/cjr033