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Minerva Stomatologica 2014 September;63(9):283-94


language: English, Italian

Adult or not? Accuracy of Cameriere’s cut-off value for third molar in assessing 18 years of age for legal purposes

Cameriere R. 1, Pacifici A. 2, Viva S. 1, Carbone D. 2, Pacifici L. 2, Polimeni A. 2

1 AgEstimation Project, Institute of Legal Medicine, University of Macerata, Macerata, Italy; 2 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Science, Sapienza University, Rome, Italy


AIM: The discovery of reliable means to determine the age of an individual is a fundamental objective in forensic medicine, in consideration of the constant increase of illegal immigration into the European community. In 2008 Cameriere et al. developed a method based on the relationship between age and the third molar index (I3m), which assesses the degree of maturation of the third molar through measurements made on orthopantomography. The purpose of this work was to test the accuracy of Cameriere’s cut-off for I3m as a tool to assess full age (18) on a new sample of living subjects.
METHODS: Orthopantomographs of 287 Italian living subjects aged between 13 and 22 years have been randomly selected and included in the study. Identification number, gender, date of birth and date of execution of the radiograph were recorded for each patient on a Microsoft Excel® spreadsheet. Radiographs were digitalized and analyzed using a computerized image-processing program (Adobe® Photoshop® CS4).
RESULTS: The results show that the sensitivity of the test was 84.1% and the specificity was 92.5%. The estimated post-test probability was 90.1%, with a confidence interval of 95% (83.6%, 95.2%). Thus, the probability that a person being positive to the test has 18 or more years of age was 90.1%.
CONCLUSION: The results highlight the contribution of Cameriere’s cut-off value for the I3m in the assessment of full age, always remembering that the simultaneous employment of previously introduced complementary methods is essential for the purpose.

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