The research of the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology is focused on the development and improvement of diagnostic methods for the visualization of normal and abnormal structures in the maxillofacial complex. This is realized from different perspectives including fundamental and applied (clinical) components:
- Computer aided analysis of digital radiographic images: the application of advanced digital image processing procedures enables the recognition of specific features in radiographic images of normal and abnormal structures being characteristic for the condition of these structures. Typically, these features are either used for the quantitative assessment of tissue characteristics (density, homogeneity, etc.) or they add a new dimension to the description of the (patho)physiology of the tissue structures under investigation. Commonly the order of magnitude of this description is between the microscopic (micro; e.g., connectivity, density) and the anatomic (macro; e.g., texture, entropy) level.
- Three dimensional visualization of radiographic information: an important aspect of the research objectives is the visualization of radiographic image data into 3D-space. The purpose of 3D imaging is to overcome the inherent drawbacks of projection radiography, such as the lack of information about the third dimension. We try to achieve this goal by the use of specific 3D reconstruction techniques called Local CT and Cone Beam CT, which results in a much lower dose and a higher resolution than conventional CT. This makes the technique a better choice for many common dental diagnostic tasks than conventional CT.