Three-dimensional nasolabial displacement during movement in repaired cleft lip and palate patients

Carroll Ann Trotman, Julian J. Faraway, Greg K. Essick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Citations (SciVal)


The objective of this study was two-fold: (1) to explore the suitability of a novel modified Procrustes fit method to adjust data for head motion during instructed facial movements, and (2) to compare the adjusted data among repaired unilateral (n = 4) and bilateral (n = 5) cleft lip and palate patients and noncleft control subjects (n = 50). Using a video-based tracking system, three-dimensional displacement of 14 well-defined nasolabial landmarks was measured during four set facial animations without controlling for head motion. The modified Procrustes fit method eliminated the contributions of head motion by matching the most stable landmarks of each video-recorded frame of the face during function to frames at rest. Its effectiveness was found to approximate that of a previous method (i.e., use of a maxillary occlusal splint to which stable dentition-based markers were attached). Data from both the unilateral and bilateral cleft lip and palate patients fell outside the normal range of maximum displacements and of asymmetry, and individual patients demonstrated greater right-versus-left asymmetry in maximum displacement than did individual noncleft subjects. It is concluded that the modified Procrustes fit method is fast, is easy to apply, and allows subjects to move the head naturally without the inconvenience of a splint while facial movement data are being collected. Results obtained using this method support the view that facial movements in cleft patients may be severely hampered and that assessment of facial animation should be strongly considered when contemplating surgical lip revisions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1273-1283
Number of pages11
JournalPlastic and reconstructive surgery
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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