The aim of the present study was to contribute to a more accurate indication and better integration of developing third molar transplantation into orthodontic space management, using the results gleaned from the authors' own pool of patients. For this purpose, a clinical and radiographic examination of 61 transplanted developing molars in 57 patients was carried out after an average of 3.3 years. The overall success rate was 85%. Failure was due in 10% of cases to impaired periodontal healing (inflammatory root resorption, ankylosis, or increased pocket probing depths) and in 5% of cases to insufficient or arrested postoperative root development accompanied by increased transplant mobility. The incidence of postoperative cessation of further root development was significantly higher (p = 0.011) in transplants at early developmental stages, which also had a negative impact on the final root length, the crown-root ratio and the mobility values of these transplants. The transplantation of developing third molars should be given stronger consideration in treatment plans for orthodontic space management although it represents a real alternative to orthodontic space closure only in exceptional cases. However, unlike implantological or prosthodontic treatment, it offers an opportunity to replace a missing or non-retainable tooth with a patient's own vital and fully functional tooth, provided the appropriate transplant is selected.

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