Pathophysiology of Temporomandibular Joint Arthritis: Review

  • Ju, Hye-Min (Department of Oral Medicine, Pusan National University Dental Hospital, Dental Research Institute) ;
  • Kim, Kyung-Hee (Department of Oral Medicine, Inje University Busan Paik Hospital) ;
  • Jeong, Sung-Hee (Department of Oral Medicine, Pusan National University, School of Dentistry, Dental Research Institute, Dental and Life Science Institute) ;
  • Ahn, Yong-Woo (Department of Oral Medicine, Pusan National University, School of Dentistry, Dental Research Institute, Dental and Life Science Institute) ;
  • Ok, Soo-Min (Department of Oral Medicine, Pusan National University, School of Dentistry, Dental Research Institute, Dental and Life Science Institute)
  • Received : 2021.09.02
  • Accepted : 2021.09.17
  • Published : 2021.09.30


As for temporomandibular joint arthritis (TMJ OA), managing the contributing factors at an early stage through accurate diagnosis is necessary to prevent irreversible bone changes. TMJ OA, which is a multi-organ disease caused by various pathophysiological mechanisms, is developed mainly due to mechanical overload. It is a disease characterized by degeneration of articular cartilage and subchondral bone as a low-level inflammatory arthritis condition developed by dysregulation of catabolic and anabolic activity of chondrocytes. Age, mechanical overload sensing of cartilage, chondrocyte apoptosis, catabolic enzymes, inflammatory factors, abnormal remodeling of subchondral bone, and estrogens may be involved in the pathogenesis of arthritis. Therefore, a comprehensive evaluation is needed to diagnose and manage progressive cartilage degeneration, subchondral bone remodeling, and associated symptoms of TMJ OA.



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