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Revista Española de Cirugía Oral y Maxilofacial

On-line version ISSN 2173-9161Print version ISSN 1130-0558


IBANEZ-MANCERA, Norma Guadalupe et al. Temporomandibular joint dysfunction in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Rev Esp Cirug Oral y Maxilofac [online]. 2017, vol.39, n.2, pp.85-90. ISSN 2173-9161.

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic systemic inflammatory disease characterised by a pathogenic immune response that causes joint damage that can be disabling and even cause premature death. The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) can also be affected, causing pain, crepitus, swelling, and limitation of mandibular movements. TMJ dysfunction is a very common condition, thus the aim of this study was to determine to what extent patients with RA have TMJ dysfunction compared with healthy patients and to identify the main differences in the clinical presentation. A case-control study was performed with the objective of identifying the main differences in the clinical presentation. A total of 37 patients were included in each group. In the group of patients with RA it was found that 75% of patients (28 cases) had TMJ dysfunction, while in the control group there were only 13.5% (5 cases). The findings identified in the group of patients with RA and TMJ dysfunction were mainly: mandibular deviation, joint sounds, tooth loss, joint pain, and limitation of the opening. This study was able to identify that there is an increased risk of 82% (OR 19.9, 95% CI = 0.71-0.89) in developing TMJ dysfunction in patients with RA compared with healthy patients. It is concluded that it is important to perform periodic TMJ exploration to be able to identify early signs and symptoms of dysfunction to avoid progression. This would be reflected in better nutrition and quality of life of the patient.

Keywords : Rheumatoid arthritis; Temporomandibular joint; Temporomandibular joint dysfunction.

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