Three-Dimensional Analysis of Craniofacial Shape in Obstructive Sleep Apnea Syndrome Using Geometric Morphometrics

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Senem Turan Ozdemir; Ilker Ercan; Fatma Ezgi Can; Gokhan Ocakoglu2; Ezgi Demirdogen Cetinoglu & Ahmet Ursavas


Craniofacial morphology is a risk factor for obstructive sleep apnea syndrome. The general aim of this study was to investigate the craniofacial shape differences in adults with and without obstructive sleep apnea syndrome, using geometric morphometric methods. A descriptive study conducted in 106 adult Turkish subjects, consisting of 50 patients with OSAS diagnosed by polysomnography and 56 non-OSAS controls. Three dimensional craniofacial scanning processes were performed on patient subjects on the same day as the PSG. Twelve standard craniofacial landmarks were collected from each subject’s 3D craniofacial scan. Geometric morphometric analysis was used to compare the craniofacial shape differences between the OSAS and non-OSAS control groups. No statistically significant difference in terms of general shape in face shapes was found between the OSAS group and control group. However, local significance differences were found. There were significant differences between the groups in some of the interlandmark distances: 11 % of the interlandmark distances were greater in OSAS patients, and 29 % were greater in controls. Greater measured distances in OSAS are concentrated in the nasal region. In the control group, the difference is not concentrated in a specific region. Given the relationship of craniofacial structural alterations and sleep disordered breathing, we hypothesized that inter-landmark distance measurements in the craniofacial anatomy of patients might be predictive of OSA.

KEY WORDS: Obstructive sleep apnea; Craniofacial morphology; Geometric morphometry.

How to cite this article

OZDEMIR, S. T.; ERCAN, I.; CAN, F. E.; OCAKOGLU, G.; CETINOGLU, E. D. & URSAVAS, A. Three-dimensional analysis of craniofacial shape in obstructive sleep apnea syndrome using geometric morphometrics. Int. J. Morphol., 37(1):338-343, 2019