Prevalence of short-root anomaly in healthy young adults

Acta Odontol Scand. 2002 Jan;60(1):56-9. doi: 10.1080/000163502753472014.


Short-root anomaly (SRA), occurring mostly in maxillary incisors, is defined as developmentally very short, blunt dental roots. The condition has a genetic background and is related to hypodontia. Earlier population studies have been based on schoolchildren with developing dentitions and have indicated prevalence figures between 1% and 10%. We studied a random sample of existing panoramic radiographs of 2000 university students for SRA. Roots as long as or shorter than the crowns in the incisors and visually evaluated as very short, blunt roots bilaterally in the posterior teeth were classified as SRA. The prevalence was 1.3%. According to anamnestic information, half the SRA patients had undergone orthodontic therapy, but pre-treatment radiographs were unavailable. In 70% of the SRA patients the short-rooted tooth pairs were upper incisors, but also involved were maxillary premolars, lateral incisors, and lower second premolars. Women were significantly more often affected. We discuss other factors known to cause short-rooted teeth and conclude that the population prevalence for genetic SRA in fully developed dentitions is close to our 1.3%.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anodontia / epidemiology
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Female
  • Finland / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Odontometry
  • Prevalence
  • Sex Ratio
  • Tooth Abnormalities / epidemiology*
  • Tooth Root / abnormalities*