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Aging of the Craniofacial Skeleton
Gaby D. Doumit, M.D. M.Sc., Frank Papay, MD, Susan Orra, MD, Bahar Bassiri Gharb, MD PhD, Jim E. Zins, MD.
Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH, USA.

PURPOSE:
Craniofacial skeletal aging has been investigated in the past through radiological and anthropometric analysis. All these studies compared different patients in different age groups.
METHODS:
Cleveland Clinic electronic medical record system was searched since its inception in 2001 for all patients who underwent 2 computed tomography (CT) of the face at least 10 years apart. Patients with history of facial fracture, facial surgery, cancer, radiation and edentulous patients were excluded. The patients’ pre and postoperative CT images were overlapped to assess soft tissue and skeletal changes.
RESULTS:
Thirty patients underwent two CT of the face or orbit. Seven patients met the inclusion criteria. There were 5 females and 2 males. The average age was 61 years and the average period between CT was 10.1 years. All patients (n=4) that were in their 5th and 6th decade of life at time of the initial CT demonstrated bone resorption at the inferior orbital rim. Other involved areas were zygoma, superior orbital rim, lateral buttresses and nasal bone. Those patients also demonstrated peri-orbital soft tissue recession. Patients (n=3) in their 4th and 7th decade of life demonstrated minimal or no changes.
CONCLUSION:
This is the first study to analyze craniofacial skeletal aging on the same cohort. Facial bone resorption commonly involved the inferior orbital rim in patients that were in their 5th or 6th decade of life.


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