Background: The spheno‐occipital synchondrosis (SOS) is an important growth center which plays an important role in cranial base development and can define the final relation of SOS with the upper and lower jaws. The morphology and fusion degree of SOS varies in different ages among different populations.
Objectives: Thus, the aim of this study was to evaluate the age and sex dependence of ossification of the spheno-occipital synchondrosis in the Iranian population using CBCT.
Methods: This cross-sectional retrospective study was performed on 517 CBCT images of 6- to 18-year-old patients in Mashhad, Iran. Patients with obvious pathology or fractures were excluded from the study. The SOS ossification was classified into four stages from 0 to 3. Two independent observers scored the images. The ossification stage of the SOS was classified according to the age and sex of the patients. Kruskal-Wallis and Kendall’s tau-b used for statistical analysis.
Results: In this study, 517 samples of 260 females (50.3%) and 257 males (49.7%) with a mean age of 12.03 ± 3.74 years were examined. A significant difference did not exist between males and females regarding their stage of SOS ossification, although males were younger at the SOS transitional stages of 0 to 1, and 1 to 2 compared to females. Also, the SOS starts the ossification process at the age of 11 in females and 10.8 in males.
Conclusions: The present study showed in the mean age of 16.81 ± 1.12 years, most subjects were in developmental stage 3. Due to the fact that in developmental stage 3 SOS closes, there were no passive maxillary growth after this time. In none of the SOS stages, females and males differed significantly in mean age (P > 0.05). The age of the onset of SOS closure in females was 11 years and in males it was about 10.8 years.