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J Oral Rehabil. 2000 Aug;27(8):647-59.

Need for occlusal therapy and prosthodontic treatment in the management of temporomandibular disorders. Part II: Tooth loss and prosthodontic treatment.

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  • 1Department of Fixed Prosthodontics and Periodontology, Facial Pain Unit, University of Gent, Belgium. jan.deboever@rug.ac.be


The second part of this review, evaluating the literature on the relationship between dental occlusion and temporomandibular disorders (TMDs), focuses on the aetiological importance of tooth loss and the place of prosthodontic replacement in the treatment of TMD. Loss of teeth and lack of posterior occlusal support seem to have little influence on the development of TMD, which calls into question the use of prosthodontic restoration as prevention or treatment for TMD. In addition, there are practically no studies assessing the benefit of instrumental analysis in diagnosis or comparing the outcome of prosthodontic treatment with simple reversible methods in the management of TMD. There is a trend in the current literature to abandon any treatment, including positioning appliances and prosthodontic measures, to 'recapture the disk' in patients with disk displacements because of the favourable, long-term results achieved after using more simple methods. It is concluded that prosthetic therapy in TMD patients is not appropriate for initial TMD treatment and should only be carried out on prosthodontic indications after reversible treatment has alleviated pain and dysfunction.

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