Effect of different palatal expanders with miniscrews in surgically assisted rapid palatal expansion: A non-linear finite element analysis

Creative Commons License

Koç O., Koç N., Jacob H. B.

Dental Press Journal of Orthodontics, vol.29, no.1, 2024 (Scopus) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 29 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2024
  • Doi Number: 10.1590/2177-6709.29.1.e2423195.oar
  • Journal Name: Dental Press Journal of Orthodontics
  • Journal Indexes: Scopus, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Keywords: Finite element analysis, Maxillary transverse deficiency, Palatal expansion, Surgically assisted rapid palatal expansion
  • Yıldız Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Introduction: Surgically assisted rapid palatal expansion (SARPE) has been the treatment of choice in subjects presenting skeletally mature sutures. Objective: The purpose of this study was to analyze stress distribution and displacement of the craniofacial and dentoalveolar structures resulting from three types of palatal expanders with surgical assistance using a non-linear finite element analysis. Material and Methods: Three different palatal expanders were designed: Model-I (tooth-bone-borne type containing four miniscrews), Model-II (tooth-bone-borne type containing two miniscrews), and Model-III (bone-borne type containing four miniscrews). A Le Fort I osteotomy was performed, and a total of 5.0 mm palatal expansion was simulated. Nonlinear analysis (three theory) method (geometric nonlinear theory, nonlinear contact theory, and nonlinear material methods) was used to evaluate stress and displacement of several craniofacial and dentoalveolar structures. Results: Regardless of the maxillary expander device type, surgically assisted rapid palatal expansion produces greater anterior maxillary expansion than posterior (ANS ranged from 2.675 mm to 3.444 mm, and PNS ranged from 0.522 mm to 1.721 mm); Model-I showed more parallel midpalatal suture opening pattern-PNS/ANS equal to 54%. In regards to ANS, Model-II (1.159 mm) and Model-III (1.000 mm) presented larger downward displacement than Model-I (0.343 mm). PNS displaced anteriorly more than ANS for all devices; Model-III presented the largest amount of forward displacement for PNS (1.147 mm) and ANS (1.064 mm). All three type of expanders showed similar dental displacement, and minimal craniofacial sutures separation. As expected, different maxillary expander designs produce different primary areas and levels of stresses (the bone-borne expander presented minimal stress at the teeth and the tooth-bone-borne expander with two miniscrews presented the highest). Conclusions: Based on this finite element method/finite element analysis, the results showed that different maxillary expander designs produce different primary areas and levels of stresses, minimal displacement of the craniofacial sutures, and different skeletal V-shape expansion.