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Predicting fractures using trabecular patterns on panoramic radiographs.

Journal article
Authors Wil Geraets
Grethe Jonasson
Magnus Hakeberg
Published in Clinical oral investigations
Volume 22
Issue 1
Pages 377-384
ISSN 1436-3771
Publication year 2018
Published at Institute of Odontology
Pages 377-384
Language en
Subject categories Other Medical Sciences


The observer score of the trabecular pattern on panoramic radiographs is known to be a strong predictor of bone fractures. The aim of this study was to enhance the predictive power of panoramic radiographs by means of texture analysis methods.The study followed 304 postmenopausal women during 26 years. At the beginning of the study, panoramic radiographs were obtained. One observer assessed the trabecular pattern in the premolar region as dense, sparse, or alternating dense and sparse. In addition, on each radiograph, a region of interest was selected in the molar/premolar region and analyzed with texture analysis procedures. During 26 years of follow-up, 115 women suffered a fracture of the hip, spine, leg, or arm. Logistic regression was applied to test the predictive power of various variables with respect to fractures.Of all variables, the observer score of the trabecular pattern correlated strongest with the occurrence of fractures. By itself, the score yielded an ROC curve with an area of 0.80 under the curve. Combining the observer score with the texture analysis features increased the area under the ROC curve to 0.85.The trabecular pattern on panoramic radiographs provides a strong predictor of fractures, at least for postmenopausal women. The assessment by an observer combined with texture analysis procedures yields a predictive power that parallels best known predictions in literature.This study illustrates that panoramic radiographs are state of the art predictors of postcranial fractures.

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