Imaging feature of cosmetic fillers in cone-beam computed tomography and its dental consideration

Chena Lee, Yoon Joo Choi, Kug Jin Jeon, Seong Ho Choi, Sang Sun Han

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: As the application of cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) in head and neck area increases for dental treatment purposes, cosmetic filler materials are incidentally observed. Since the materials are very diverse, unnecessary referrals or additional examination may be performed when clinicians are unfamiliar with the imaging findings. Thus, this study aimed to introduce the imaging characteristics of cosmetic fillers and grafts shown in dental CBCT with dental considerations that the clinician should be aware of. Methods: CBCT obtained for dental purpose presenting cosmetic material were selected. The location of the material was identified as buccal, retroantral, parotid space, nose, zygoma, and symphysis. The material was classified as single or multiple, and grouped according to morphology: speckle, round, eggshell, linear, and amorphous. The radiopacity was classified as similar to soft tissue, between soft and hard tissue, similar to hard tissue, and metal. Results: Twenty-one patients were reviewed, and all patients were female with mean age of 50.5 years. The buccal space was the most frequent location for multiple filler materials. The symphysis was the next frequent location and only single material were shown in this location. Cases having multiple filler showed diverse shapes while all single materials showed round shape. Fillers showing radiopacity of hard tissue were similar to diseases producing soft tissue calcifications. Metal-density material distributed in spaces induced white and dark streak artifacts in the CBCT image. All single materials presented radiopacity between soft and hard tissue and attached to the bone surface causing mandibular bone resorption. Conclusions: Cosmetic materials displayed various imaging features in CBCT acquired during dental procedure. Clinicians should consider that cosmetic material may cause mandibular bone resorption and imaging artifacts on CBCT. Knowledge of the imaging characteristics of cosmetic fillers may help correct diagnosis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number24
JournalHead and Face Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Dec

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea(NRF) grant funded by the Korea government(MSIT) (No. 2022R1A2B5B01002517).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022, The Author(s).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Dentistry(all)
  • Clinical Neurology


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