The RPE is an all-metal appliance with an expansion screw soldered to bands on the first molars. The standard design has lingual support bars placed from the bicuspids to the first molars. Specialty Appliances’ standard is an expansion screw placed in the second bicuspid area for easier activation.
A rapid palatal expander (RPE) is a specially made appliance used to widen the two halves of the top jaw, also known as the palate or maxilla. The two halves are joined together by a “suture” in the center of the roof of the mouth. The RPE is attached to the upper back teeth and eases the suture apart, which makes the jaw wider. As the jaw expands, new bone fills in between the two halves of the palate.