A re-evaluation of the importance of disc position in temporomandibular disorders

Authors

  • M. Franklin Dolwick DMD, PhD,

    1. Professor, Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, College of Dentistry, University of Florida, USA.
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  • Dr George Dimitroulis MDSc(Melb), FDSRCS(Eng), FFDRCS(Irel)

    Corresponding author
    1. Formerly Clinical Fellow, Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, College of Dentistry, University of Florida, USA.
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20 Collins Street, Melbourne, Victoria 3000.

Abstract

During the 1970s there was a resurgence of interest in disc displacement as being central to the pathology of internal derangement. Since then it has been proposed that a displaced disc can result in pain, mandibular dysfunction, degenerative joint disease and mandibular growth disturbances. Two decades later, and with the introduction of sophisticated investigations and treatment modalities, doubts have emerged as to true pathological significance of disc position. Evidence derived from clinical observations, autopsy material, imaging studies and surgical findings has failed to establish strong support for the central role of disc displacement in internal derangement of the temporomandibular joint.

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