The aim of this study was to evaluate the hard and soft tissue profile changes following treatment of functional and mild skeletal class III malocclusion in mixed dentition by means of the Frankel functional regulator (FR-3) appliance, and to reveal the mechanism and effectiveness of treatment with FR-3 appliance. Twenty-six patients (chronological mean age, 8.7±1.4 years; mean treatment duration, 10.3±1.3 months) with functional and mild skeletal class III malocclusion were selected and treated with FR-3 appliances. Lateral cephalogram was taken pre- and post-treatment, and the data was analyzed by paired-samples t test with SPSS22.0 software package. Differences were considered statistically significant at P < 0.05. The results demonstrated that the FR-3 appliance produced a statistically significant decrease in L1-NB, L1-MP, U1-L1 (P<0.01) and an increase greatly in ANB, MP-FH, Y axis, ANS- Me, ANS-Me/N-Me and overjet (P<0.01). SNA, SNB were increased significantly (P<0.05). Meanwhile, N’-Sn-Pog’, ULSn-SN, LLSi- SN increased, S-N’-Si, LL-EP decreased with significant difference (P<0.01). S-N’-Sn, Cm-Sn-UL, UL-EP, Sn-Mes and Ns-Mes increased with significant difference (P<0.05). Therefore it was concluded that after FR-3 treatment, the position of mandible may rotate clockwise backwards and downwards, with the labioversion of upper incisors and linguoversion of lower incisors. Although point A moved mesially, the length and position of the maxilla did not change significantly. With the protrusion of upper lip and the retrusion of lower lip, the relationship among nose, upper lip, lower lip and chin become harmonious, the profile of soft tissue is more coordinated and attractive.
KEY WORDS: Class III malocclusion; Frankel functional regulator III; Cephalometric analysis; Morphological changes.