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Chukwujekwu et al  

Full Length Research Paper

Odontometric Study of Mandibular Canine Teeth Dimorphism In Establishing Sex Identity In South-east Nigeria


1Chukwujekwu I. E., *1Ezejindu D. N., 1Nwosu N. M.

1Department of Anatomy, College of Health Science, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Nnewi Campus, Anambra State, Nigeria.


Corresponding author email: damianezejindu@gmail.com; Tel: +2348032715300

Received March 22, 2014; Accepted April 10, 2014


Gender determination of skeletal remains is a part of many medico-legal as well as anthropological examinations. Many anatomical structures have been studied but the teeth seem to be the most reliable structure since teeth represent the durable and resilient part of the skeleton. In this study, odontometric evaluation of mandibular canine width and inter-canine distance was carried out on 400 apparently healthy individuals whose ages ranged between 17-30 years at a gender ratio of 1:1 so as to determine the sex of individuals and possibility of dimorphism of the canines being used as a valid tool in the forensic and legal identification of an individual. These measurements were done with digital vernier caliper while the mandibular canine indices were derived by the division of the mandibular canine width by the inter-canine distance. The mean right mandibular canine width was 7.35±0.55 and mean left mandibular canine width of 7.64±0.48 in males while females had 6.84±0.35 and 7.07±0.41 respectively. The percentage analysis of sexual dimorphism showed that the left mandibular canine exhibited a greater degree of sexual dimorphism. The inter-canine distance showed a high degree of sexual dimorphism which was found statistically significant. The calculated MCI was greater in males than in females, but when offered for prediction of sex, out of 200 males, sex was correctly predicted only in 65 males and out of 200 females, only 58 were correctly predicted. Thus MCI of right side values showed 31.5% of males and 29% in females while MCI left side values showed 36% of males and 27.5% in females. Therefore, the mandibular canine width and inter-canine distance have proven beyond doubt high degree of sexual dimorphism hence a useful material in forensic identification while the use of MCI in forensic identification is discarded.

Keywords: Odontometry, Sex determination, Mandibular canine width, Mandibular inter-canine distance, Mandibular canine index.







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