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 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 31-34

Morphometric variations in sigmoid notch and condyle of the mandible: A retrospective forensic digital analysis in North Indian population


1 Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, College of Dental Sciences, Davangere, Karnataka, India
2 Dental Surgeon, Community Health Center, Kachchh, Gujarat, India
3 Department of Conservative and Endodontics, Daswani Dental College, Kota, Rajasthan, India
4 Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, Daswani Dental College, Kota, Rajasthan, India

Date of Submission19-Mar-2020
Date of Decision18-Apr-2020
Date of Acceptance20-Apr-2020
Date of Web Publication20-Jun-2020

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Varsha Kanjani
Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, College of Dental Sciences, Davangere - 577 004, Karnataka
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/amhs.amhs_37_20

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  Abstract 


Introduction: The peculiarity of anatomical structures such as mandible, frontal sinus, sella turcica, nasal septum, and styloid process present in human skull and their variations leads to the revolution in forensic anthropology. The digitization in radiology enables a health professional to store the previous antemortem records and thereby compare it with postmortem records in case of mass disasters. Aim: The present retrospective analysis was conducted to evaluate the morphological variations in the sigmoid notch and condyles of the mandible and also to determine its peculiarity in establishing individual's identity. Materials and Methods: The study included 1200 panoramic radiographs of individuals in the age range of 10–60 years among population of Jodhpur, Rajasthan. The radiographs were taken using PLANMECA machine and enrolled radiographs were outlined using tracing tool installed in the software. The morphological variations of sigmoid notch and condyle in the panoramic radiographs were analyzed bilaterally for both males and females using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) software version 21.0. Results: The sloping shape of the sigmoid notch was most commonly found (43%), followed by wide (37.66%) and round shape (19.25%). The most common shape of condyle observed was round (46.12%), followed by angled (29.29%), convex (21.95%), and flat shape (2.62%). The distribution of sigmoid notch and condylar shape variations among right and left sides was not statistically significant. Conclusion: In forensic anthropology, the morphological variations among sigmoid notch and condyle of mandible using single panoramic radiographic view can be used as an adjuvant for personal identification.

Keywords: Condyle, forensic anthropology, panoramic view, personal identification, sigmoid notch


How to cite this article:
Kanjani V, Kalyani P, Patwa N, Sharma V. Morphometric variations in sigmoid notch and condyle of the mandible: A retrospective forensic digital analysis in North Indian population. Arch Med Health Sci 2020;8:31-4

How to cite this URL:
Kanjani V, Kalyani P, Patwa N, Sharma V. Morphometric variations in sigmoid notch and condyle of the mandible: A retrospective forensic digital analysis in North Indian population. Arch Med Health Sci [serial online] 2020 [cited 2020 Oct 29];8:31-4. Available from: https://www.amhsjournal.org/text.asp?2020/8/1/31/287360




  Introduction Top


Forensic anthropology plays a significant role in the identification of dead or decomposed individuals in case of mass disasters where DNA profiling and fingerprint analysis are not feasible. The skull is the second most versatile and unique anatomical structure with 92% accuracy, after pelvis in human body. The singularity of anatomical structures such as frontal sinus, sella turcica, nasal septum, orbital aperture, and mandible present in human skull and their variations leads to the innovation in forensic anthropology. The morphometric variations in the sigmoid notch and condyle of mandible establish the individual's identity. Studies published in literature conducted on dry skulls documented the feasibility of sigmoid notch and condyles in forensic anthropology.[1],[2],[3],[4],[5],[6]

The maxillofacial radiology enables a health professional to archive the previous antemortem records and compare with postmortem records. In the present study, panoramic radiographic view has been taken into consideration as it is simple, cost-effective, and paramount screening radiographic view recommended by oral health professionals as well as images the condyles and sigmoid notch bilaterally.

The present study was conducted to:

  • Evaluate the morphological variations in the sigmoid notch and condyle of the mandible
  • Establish its practicality as an aid in personal identification.



  Materials and Methods Top


The present retrospective study was conducted from August to December 2018 in a diagnostic setup among population of Jodhpur, Rajasthan. The study included 1200 panoramic radiographs of individuals in the age range of 10–60 years.

Individuals were further divided based on the age as 10–19 years, 20–29 years, 30–39 years, 40–49 years, and 50–59 years. The ideal and properly positioned radiographs with intact mandible were included in the present study. The panoramic radiographs taken with improper technique, magnification errors, artifacts or individuals with history of maxillofacial trauma, metabolic or endocrinal disorders or syndromic patients were excluded from the study.

The radiographs included in the study were taken using PLANMECA machine with installed Romexis software under standard exposure parameters. The enrolled radiographs were outlined using tracing tool installed in the software. The variations in sigmoid notch were categorized by Shakya et al. into sloping, wide, and round [Figure 1].[7] The various shapes of condyles were classified according to Hedge et al. into round, angled, convex, and flat [Figure 2].[8] The morphological variations in the panoramic radiographs were analyzed bilaterally for both males and females. Therefore, a total of 2400 sides were studied in the present study.
Figure 1: Different shapes of sigmoid notch: (a) Sloping, (b) wide, (c) round

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Figure 2: Different shapes of condyles: (a) Round, (b) angled, (c) convex, (d) flat

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Statistical analysis

The obtained data were tabulated and analyzed using SPSS software version 21.0 (SPSS Inc., Chicago, IL, USA). The Chi-square test was used to analyze the significance of data with P < 0.05 being considered statistically significant.


  Results Top


The mean age of males and females in the present study was 40.52 ± 13.62 and 36.92 ± 11.47 years, respectively. Total of 2400 radiographs were analysed (equivalent to 2400 sides) with equal number of males and females. The sloping shape of the sigmoid notch was most commonly found with the 43% (1034) distributed as 548 on right and 486 on left side, followed by wide shape with 37.66%. The least common shape of sigmoid notch was round with 19.25% (462). The distribution of sigmoid notch variations among right and left sides was not statistically significant (P = 0.27) [Table 1] and [Graph 1].
Table 1: Distribution of anatomical structure based on site

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The most common shape of condyle observed was round with 1107 sides (46.12%), of which 575 were on the right side and 532 were on the left side. The next common shape was angled (703, 29.29%) with 375 on the right and 328 on the left side, followed by convex shape (527, 21.95%), with 285 and 242 on the right and left sides, respectively. The least shape of condyle assessed was flat with a total percentage of 2.62 only. The distribution of condylar shape variations among right and left sides was not statistically significant with P= 0.442 [Table 1] and [Graph 2].



The age-wise distribution of condyle was more in the age interval of 20–29 years with 31.79% (763), followed by age interval of 30–39, 10–19, 40–49, and 50–59 years with 30.33%, 23.91%, 11.83%, and 2.12%, respectively. The distribution of sigmoid notch was 19% at age interval of 10–19 years, 27.37% at 20–29 years, 32.75% at 30–39 years, 14.83% at 40–49 years, and at 6.04% at 50–59 years. The maximum numbers of individuals were from 30 to 39 years interval and the least individuals belong to 50–59 years [Table 2].
Table 2: Age-wise distribution of anatomical structures

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  Discussion Top


The identification of dead or deceased individual depends on the comparative analysis of antemortem and postmortem records of the human structures. The morphological variations in the anatomical structures can be due to either developmental or functional discrepancies. In dental diagnosis, panoramic radiographs are most commonly used because of its simplicity, low radiation exposure, and ability to cover larger area of maxillofacial region.

The singularity of anatomical structures present in human body leads to identification of individual in forensic anthropology. The various structures such as sella turcica, frontal sinus, nasal septum, and nutrient canals have proven as an adjuvant benefit, for human identification in dead, diseased, or decomposed cases. The sigmoid notch and condyles are another similar structure with morphological variations, thereby can be used to establish individual's identity in forensic anthropology.

The maximum number of individuals belongs to 20–29 years, followed by 30–39 and 10–19 years. The least number of individuals belongs to 50–59 years of age group. Classifying the present enrolled based on the age, most of the individuals taken in the study belong to 20–29 years, which is not in accordance with the studies published by Nagaraj et al., whereas the maximum numbers of individuals were in age group of 30–40 years.[9]

In the present study, among North Indian population, the sloping shape of the sigmoid notch was most commonly seen followed by wide and round shape. The present study was in accordance with the study published by Shakya et al., who evaluated the variations in coronoid process and sigmoid notch among South Indian population, stating that the sloping type of sigmoid notch was most commonly observed.[7] Another study published by Nagaraj et al. concluded sloping type of sigmoid notch was the most common among Bengaluru population, which is in accordance with the present study.[9] The studies published by Sahithi et al. concluded that the most common variation of sigmoid notch was wider form followed by round and sloping form which was not in consonance with the present study.[10] The morphological variations in sigmoid notch were not statistically significant among males and females in the present study, which was similar to the studies published by Nagaraj et al. and Sahithi et al.[9],[10]

Yale et al. first reported morphological variations in mandibular condyle in 1961.[11],[12] In the present study, another anatomical structure taken into consideration was mandibular condyle. The most common shape of condyle observed was round followed by angled and convex shape, respectively. The least shape of condyle assessed was flat in the present study. The distribution of condylar shape variations among right and left sides was not statistically significant. The present study was in accordance with the studies published by Nagaraj et al., who concluded round as the most common shape of condyle among South Indian population in 30–39 years age group.[9] The study published by Oliveira-Santos et al. stated round-shaped condyles most commonly seen among Brazilian population after angled shape. They concluded better condylar shape distribution among young population as compared to old age.[13] Similar study published by Ribeiro et al. studies among dry human skull showed greater occurrence of round shaped condyle.[14] The condylar anatomical variations were not significant among males and females in the present study, which was similar to the studies published by Nagaraj et al.[9]

On the other hand, a study published by Christiansen et al. and Raustia and Pyhtinen involved computed tomography as a measure to determine different shapes of condyle.[15],[16] The present study involved the panoramic radiographic view to evaluate morphological variations in sigmoid notch and condyle as the present modality is simple, cost-effective, and first screening modality to be used by health professionals.

Only few studies are stated in literature, to determine morphological variations in sigmoid notch and condyle of mandible among North Indian population. Such studies should be further conducted among various regions of country to determine its practicality in personal identification. The present study can be further conducted using precise modality using cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT).


  Conclusion Top


Personal identification majorly depends on the uniqueness of the anatomical structures. In forensic anthropology, the morphological variations among sigmoid notch and condyles of mandible using single panoramic radiographic view can be used as an adjuvant for personal identification. Advance effective technologies such as CBCT, CT, and magnetic resonance imaging are also equally effective in the personal identification but are expensive with higher radiation dose.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
Last RJ. Eugene Wolff's anatomy of the eye and orbit. In: The Orbit and Paranasal Sinuses. 6th ed. London: HK Lewis and Co. Ltd.; 1968. p. 1-29.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Yahya MR, Rahman SA, Alam MK. Facial skeleton morphometry: A 3D study. Int Med J 2013;20:716-20.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Taniguchi M, Sakoda S, Kano T, Zhu BL, Kamikodai Y, Fujita MQ, et al. Possible use of nasal septum and frontal sinus patterns to radiographic identification of unknown human remains. Osaka City Med J 2003;49:31-8.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
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Maloth KN, Kundoor VK, Vishnumolakala SS, Kesidi S, Lakshmi MV, Thakur M. Mandibular ramus: A predictor for sex determination-A digital radiographic study. J Indian Acad Oral Med Radiol 2017;29:242.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
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Saini V, Srivastava R, Rai RK, Shamal SN, Singh TB, Tripathi SK. Mandibular ramus: An indicator for sex in fragmentary mandible. J Forensic Sci 2011;56 Suppl 1:S13-6.  Back to cited text no. 5
    
6.
Tapas S. Morphological variations of coronoid process in dry adult human mandibles. Indian J Basic Appl Med Res 2014;3:401-5.  Back to cited text no. 6
    
7.
Shakya S, Ongole R, Nagraj SK. Morphology of coronoid process and sigmoid notch itn orthopantomograms of South Indian population. World J Dent 2013;4:1-3.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.
Hegde S, Praveen BN, Shetty SR. Morphological and radiological variations of mandibular condyles in health and diseases: A systematic review. J Dent 2013;3:154.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
9.
Nagaraj T, Nigam H, Santosh HN, Gogula S, Sumana CK, Sahu P. Morphological variations of the coronoid process, condyle and sigmoid notch as an adjunct in personal identification. J Med Radiol Pathol Surg 2017;4:1-5.  Back to cited text no. 9
    
10.
Sahithi D, Reddy S, Teja DD, Koneru J, Praveen KN, Sruthi R. Reveal the concealed–Morphological variations of the coronoid process, condyle and sigmoid notch in personal identification. Egypt J Forensic Sci 2016;6:108-13.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.
Yale SH, Rosenberg HM, Ceballos M, Haupt-Fuehrer JD. Laminagraphic cephalometry in the analysis of mandibular condyle morphology. A preliminary report. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol 1961;14:793-805.  Back to cited text no. 11
    
12.
Yale SH, Ceballos M, Kresnoff CS, Hauptfuehrer JD. Some observations on the classification of mandibular condyle types. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol 1963;16:572-7.  Back to cited text no. 12
    
13.
Oliveira-Santos C, Bernardo RT, Capelozza AL. Mandibular condyle morphology on panoramic radiographs of asymptomatic temporomandibular joints. Int J Dent 2009;8:19.  Back to cited text no. 13
    
14.
Ribeiro EC, Sanches ML, Alonso LG, Smith RL. Shape and symmetry of human condyle and mandibular fossa. Int J Odontostomatol 2015;9:65-72.  Back to cited text no. 14
    
15.
Christiansen EL, Chan TT, Thompson JR, Hasso AN, Hinshaw DB Jr., Kopp S. Computed tomography of the normal temporomandibular joint. Scand J Dent Res 1987;95:499-509.  Back to cited text no. 15
    
16.
Raustia AM, Pyhtinen J. Morphology of the condyles and mandibular fossa as seen by computed tomography. J Prosthet Dent 1990;63:77-82.  Back to cited text no. 16
    


    Figures

  [Figure 1], [Figure 2]
 
 
    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2]



 

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