TMJ problems are common in otherwise healthy people. A very rare cause of TMJ is systemic sclerosis (SSc), commonly known as scleroderma. The TMJ joint is the jaw joint, which is located in front of each ear. TMJ symptoms include jaw pain, muscle spasms in the jaw and surrounding face muscles, headaches, and ringing in the ears (tinnitus) or earache. (Also see Scleroderma Dental Involvement, What is Scleroderma?, Types of Scleroderma, Systemic Sclerosis and Sjogren's Syndrome)
Are there early signs that predict development of temporomandibular joint disease (TMJD)? Autoimmune diseases and inflammatory conditions are associated with increased risk of TMJD and certain lung disorders may predict subsequent development of TMJD. PubMed, J Oral Sci, 2018 Jun 20;60(2):194-200.
Management of temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD): A surgeon's perspective. A multidisciplinary team approach to management is essential in the fundamental care of all TMD patients so that treatment can be specifically tailored to individual patient needs. PubMed, Aust Dent J, 2018 Mar;63 Suppl 1:S79-S90.
Scleroderma (SSc) and the temporomandibular joint (TMJ): reconstruction in 2 variants. Patients with SSc can safely undergo TMJ reconstruction with anticipated good results, but that the overall severity of the disease remains paramount in determining the feasibility of corrective surgery under this diagnosis. PubMed, J Oral Maxillofac Surg.
Tinnitus is ringing or noise in the ear, which is often caused by TMJ problems.
The TMJ Association features support and resources for TMJ patients.
Related Topic: Autoimmune Ear Disease ISN.
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