Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Dentistry



First Advisor

Bhavna Shroff, DDS, MDentSc, MPA


Aim: To evaluate the ability of a publicly available facial recognition application program interface (API) to calculate similarity scores for pre- and post-surgical photographs of patients undergoing orthognathic surgeries. Our primary objective was to identify which surgical procedure(s) had the greatest effect(s) on similarity score.

Methods: Standard treatment progress photographs for 25 retrospectively identified, orthodontic-orthognathic patients were analyzed using the API to calculate similarity scores between the pre- and post-surgical photographs. Photographs from two pre-surgical timepoints were compared as controls. Both relaxed and smiling photographs were included in the study to assess for the added impact of facial pose on similarity score. Surgical procedure(s) performed on each patient, gender, age at time of surgery, and ethnicity were recorded for statistical analysis. Nonparametric Kruskal-Wallis Rank Sum Tests were performed to univariately analyze the relationship between each categorical patient characteristic and each recognition score. Multiple comparison Wilcoxon Rank Sum Tests were performed on the subsequent statistically significant characteristics. P-Values were adjusted for using the Bonferroni correction technique.

Results: Patients that had surgery on both jaws had a lower median similarity score, when comparing relaxed expressions before and after surgery, compared to those that had surgery only on the mandible (p = 0.014). It was also found that patients receiving LeFort and bilateral sagittal split osteotomies (BSSO) surgeries had a lower median similarity score compared to those that received only BSSO (p = 0.009). For the score comparing relaxed expressions before surgery versus smiling expressions after surgery, patients receiving two-jaw surgeries had lower scores than those that had surgery on only the mandible (p = 0.028). Patients that received LeFort and BSSO surgeries were also found to have lower similarity scores compared to patients that received only BSSO when comparing pre-surgical relaxed photographs to post-surgical smiling photographs (p = 0.036).

Conclusions: Two-jaw surgeries were associated with a statistically significant decrease in similarity score when compared to one-jaw procedures. Pose was also found to be a factor influencing similarity scores, especially when comparing pre-surgical relaxed photographs to post-surgical smiling photographs.


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