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Temporomandibular Disorders Top Journals

The temporomandibular joints (TMJ) are the two joints connecting the jawbone to the skull. It is a bilateral synovial articulation between the temporal bone of the skull above and the mandible below; it is from these bones that its name is derived. This joint is unique in that it is a bilateral joint that functions as one unit. Since the TMJ is connected to the mandible, the right and left joints must function together and therefore are not independent of each other. The capsule is a dense fibrous membrane that surrounds the joint and incorporates  the articular eminence. It attaches to the articular eminence, the articular disc and the neck of the mandibular condyle.The unique feature of the temporomandibular joint is the articular disc. The disc is composed of dense fibrocartilagenous tissue that is positioned between the head of the mandibular condyle and the mandibula fossa of the temporal bone. The temporomandibular joints are one of the few synovial joints in the human body with an articular disc, another being the sternoclavicular joint. The disc divides each joint into two compartments, the lower and upper compartments. These two compartments are synovial cavities, which consists of an upper and a lower synovial cavity. The synovial membrane lining the joint capsule produces the synovial fluid that fills these cavities.The central area of the disc is avascular and lacks innervation, thus getting its nutrients from the surrounding synovial fluid. In contrast, the posterior ligament and the surrounding capsules along has both blood vessels and nerves. Few cells are present, but fibroblasts and white blood cells are among these. The central area is also thinner but of denser consistency than the peripheral region, which is thicker but has a more cushioned consistency.

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