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Cranio. 2000 Jan;18(1):9-22.

Temporomandibular disorder treatment outcomes: first report of a large-scale prospective clinical study.


The diagnosis and treatment of temporomandibular disorders (TMD) has been surrounded by considerable controversy. Clinical research in the field to date has been inconsistent and methodologically limited and has not firmly established the role of treatment interventions. This large scale, multisite study attempts to answer some of the questions regarding TMD diagnosis and treatment. More than 6,500 patients are currently being analyzed and 1,212 have completed TMD therapy, providing the basis for comparison with 198 untreated patients. A wide variety of treatments have been administered from 60 practice sites, whose practitioners were carefully calibrated to maximize inter-rater reliability. A validated symptom measurement system, the TMJ Scale, was employed to assure uniform assessment of treatment outcomes. Treated patients reported statistically and clinically significant symptom improvement, while untreated patients reported unchanged symptom levels. Data presented here do not support the hypothesis that TMD patients improve spontaneously without treatment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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