The application of heavy forces to the dentition, as those produced during a Rapid Maxillary Expansion (RME), has been associated in the literature with the development of root resorption of maxillary posterior teeth.
The aim of the present manuscript was to report the available data from in-vitro and in-vivo studies that can elucidate the biological processes of resorption and repair of radicular cementum after RME.
Studies evaluating the occurrence of root resorption after RME by means of histological and radiographic methodology were included. We detailed the changes of the radicular anatomy after RME and provided a synthesis of the most valuable scientific evidence showing the biological processes behind the potential modifications of radicular anatomy. Results. Loss of cementum material and reduction of radicular volumes were seen after rapid maxillary expansion. A small radicular volumetric recovery of anchored teeth occurred after the retention period; this reparative phenomenon was caused by cementum deposition without the reattachment of periodontal fibers, supporting the detrimental effects associated with RR.
Retention period and the timing of radiographic examination could influence the extension of radicular resorption detected after RME since root resorption and cementum repair may occur at the same time at this stage.
Keywords: Rapid maxillary expansion, Maxillary expansion, Orthodontic treatment, Root resorption, Dental root, External root resorption.