• Dr Changjie Guo

RPE - Rapid Palatal Expander

RPE - rapid palatal expander

A Rapid Palatal Expander (RPE) is an orthodontic appliance that puts pressure on the upper jaw (maxilla) to separate the mid palatal suture by turning a midline screw. It makes the maxilla wider and creat space. RPEs are used often to correct posterior crossbites.

This procedure is better to be done at a younger age before the palatal suture becomes fused. With adults, Surgically Assisted Rapid Palatal Expander (SARPE) is needed, which combines an RPE and surgery performed by an oral surgeon.

Activation of an RPE

A key with a plastic handle is used to turn the midline screw. Instructions are given to a parent, guardian or other person to activate an RPE.

Usually a patient will turn the expander once or twice a day for many days untill the crossbite is eliminated.



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