Temporomandibular joint injuries

Radiology. 1989 Oct;173(1):211-6. doi: 10.1148/radiology.173.1.2781010.


The clinical and radiologic findings in 30 patients who sustained injuries to the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) were retrospectively analyzed. Imaging consisted of variable combinations of radiography, tomography, two-compartment arthrography, computed tomography, and magnetic resonance imaging and was performed 2 days to 24 months after injury. Indications for imaging included acquired and/or unstable occlusal disturbances, cephalalgia, facial pain, otalgia, TMJ pain, tinnitus, dizziness, hearing disturbance, masticatory dysfunction, and muscle atrophy. Radiologic findings included internal derangement of the TMJ meniscus, swelling of retrodiskal tissues, joint effusion, mandibular condyle and condylar neck fractures, osteochondritis dissecans, avascular necrosis, degenerative condylar remodeling, osteoarthritis, musculotendinous injuries, and atrophy of masticatory muscles. After imaging studies, seven patients underwent surgery, at which time imaging findings were confirmed; one patient underwent successful aspiration of a painful hemarthrosis. TMJ injuries may result in joint derangement, radiologically demonstrable joint degeneration, masticatory muscle dysfunction, pain, and progressive clinical disability.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Temporomandibular Joint / diagnostic imaging
  • Temporomandibular Joint / injuries*
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed