Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders are a group of conditions that cause pain and dysfunction in the jaw joint and the muscles controlling jaw movement. However, diagnosis and treatment of these conditions remain controversial. To date, there is no single sign, symptom, or test that can clearly diagnose early stages of osteoarthritis (OA). Instead, the diagnosis is based on a consideration of several factors, including radiological evaluation. The current radiological diagnosis scores of TMJ pathology are subject to misdiagnosis. We believe these scores are limited by the acquisition procedures, such as oblique cuts of the CT and head positioning errors, and can lead to incorrect diagnoses of flattening of the head of the condyle, formation of osteophytes, or condylar pitting. This study consists of creating and validating a methodological framework to simulate defects in CBCT scans of known location and size, in order to create synthetic TMJ OA database. User-generated defects were created using a non-rigid deformation protocol in CBCT. All segmentation evaluation, surface distances and linear distances from the user-generated to the simulated defects showed our methodological framework to be very precise and within a voxel (0.5 mm) of magnitude. A TMJ OA synthetic database will be created next, and evaluated by expert radiologists, and this will serve to evaluate how sensitive the current radiological diagnosis tools are.
Keywords: TMJ OA; diagnosis evaluation; non-rigid registration; validation studies.