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- 1.1. There was a significant correlation between the height of the orbit (extraoral measurement) and the length of the pterygopalatine canal and fossa. Regardless of age, the length of the pterygopalatine canal and fossa could be ascertained clinically (Fig. 5). The height of the orbit was a statistically significant clinical guide which could assist the operator in the anesthetization of the maxillary division of the fifth cranial nerve.
- 2.2. From 0 to 6 years the length of the fossa and canal increased 0.79 mm. for every 1.0 mm. of orbital growth. From 6 years to adulthood the length of the fossa and canal increased 1.7 mm. per 1.0 mm. of height of orbital growth. The height of the orbit reached adult proportions by 7 to 10 years of age. The most rapid growth occurred from 0 to 2 years.
- 3.3. We found no variation in the length of the fossa and canal which could be attributed to race or sex. The height of the orbit in Eskimo infants' and children's craniums ran 1 to 3 mm. larger than in the Negro and Caucasian craniums.
- 4.4. The needle was blocked by the lateral border of the lateral pterygoid plate 25 per cent of the time in infants' and children's craniums. This increased with age, so that the incidence of obstruction was 37 per cent in craniums 10 to 19 years of age. As the angle formed by the pterygopalatine canal and the Frankfort plane became more obtuse, the incidence of anatomic obstruction to the needle increased. Lateral or medial orientation of this canal could direct the needle into the infratemporal fossa or the orbital cavity.
- 5.5. The relative location of the greater palatine foramen in infants' and children's craniums was found to be distal to the posterior molar. As the next posterior tooth erupted, the relative position of the foramen moved posteriorly. This was partially explained by sutural growth of the maxillary-palatine suture, appositional growth on the posterior part of the maxilla and palatine process, and by alveolar bone associated with the eruption of the dentition.
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☆This study was supported by grant No. 2343020603 of the National Institutes of Health for students at the University of Southern California School of Dentistry.
© 1966 Published by Elsevier Inc.