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Volume 13 , Issue 1
Winter 1999

Pages 38-48

Effect of Occlusal Appliances and Clenching on the Internally Deranged TMJ Space


PMID: 10425967

Aims: Stabilization appliances and mandibular anterior repositioning appliances have been used to treat patients with internal derangement of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) based on the assumption that these appliances work by decompressing the TMJ. The purpose of this study was to indirectly test this assumption. Methods: Bilateral TMJ tomograms of 7 subjects with unilateral anterior disc displacement without reduction (ADDwor) were taken during comfortable closure and during maximum clenching in maximum intercuspation; tomograms were also taken with the 2 types of occlusal appliances in use. Outlines of the condyle and the temporal fossa were automatically determined by an edge-detection protocol, and the minimum joint space dimension of the joints with and without ADDwor was automatically measured for each experimental condition as the outcome variable. Results: Upon comfortable closure and maximum clenching, the minimum joint space dimensions of the ipsilateral and cont ralateral joints with the use of stabilization appliances and mandibular anterior repositioning appliances were not significantly different from those seen in maximum intercuspation. Conclusion: These findings do not indicate that these appliances induce an increase in joint space during closing and clenching in joints with ADDwor.

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