Prescription of panoramic radiographs in children using age-based prevalence of dental anomalies and pathologies

Int J Paediatr Dent. 2024 Mar;34(2):125-134. doi: 10.1111/ipd.13095. Epub 2023 Jul 11.


Background: Panoramic radiographs (PRs) are used in the detection and diagnosis of developmental dental anomalies and pathologies (DDAPs) in children.

Aim: The primary objective of this observational cohort study was to evaluate the age-based prevalence of DDAP on PRs, whereas the secondary objective was to determine a threshold age for the detection of DDAP to provide supportive evidence for the prescription of PR in paediatric dental practice.

Design: The study examined diagnostic PRs from 581 subjects aged 6 to 19 years. All PRs were reviewed by experienced, calibrated, masked examiners for the identification or presence of anomalies in size, shape, position, structure, and other developmental anomalies and pathologies (ODAP) of the face-neck region in a standardized condition. The data were statistically analyzed for interpretation.

Results: Overall, 74% (n = 411) of the cohort had at least one anomaly (shape anomaly: 12%, number anomaly: 17%, positional anomaly: 28%, structural anomaly: 0%, and ODAP: 63%). The optimal Youden index cutoff for any anomaly was 9 years. Twelve and 15 years also showed predictive ability.

Conclusion: The results suggest that PRs should be prescribed at ages 9, 12, and 15 years for the diagnosis of DDAP.

Keywords: dental anomalies; incidental findings; panoramic radiographs; prescription of radiographs; radiographic findings.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Humans
  • Prescriptions
  • Prevalence
  • Radiography, Panoramic
  • Tooth Abnormalities* / diagnostic imaging
  • Tooth Abnormalities* / epidemiology
  • Tooth, Impacted*