Objective: To standardize the facial soft-tissue characteristics of South Korean adults according to gender by measuring the soft-tissue thickness of young men and women with normal facial profiles by using three-dimensional (3D) reconstructed models.
Methods: Computed tomographic images of 22 men aged 20 - 27 years and 18 women aged 20 - 26 years with normal facial profiles were obtained. The hard and soft tissues were three-dimensionally reconstructed by using Mimics software. The soft-tissue thickness was measured from the underlying bony surface at bilateral (frontal eminence, supraorbital, suborbital, inferior malar, lateral orbit, zygomatic arch, supraglenoid, gonion, supraM2, occlusal line, and subM2) and midline (supraglabella, glabella, nasion, rhinion, mid-philtrum, supradentale, infradentale, supramentale, mental eminence, and menton) landmarks.
Results: The men showed significantly thicker soft tissue at the supraglabella, nasion, rhinion, mid-philtrum, supradentale, and supraglenoid points. In the women, the soft tissue was significantly thicker at the lateral orbit, inferior malar, and gonion points.
Conclusions: The soft-tissue thickness in different facial areas varies according to gender. Orthodontists should use a different therapeutic approach for each gender.
Keywords: Anatomy; Computed tomography; Soft tissue.