Cooper, B.C.: The Role of Bioelectronic Instrumentation in the Documentation and Management of Temporomandibular Disorders. Oral Surgery, Oral Pathology, Oral Medicine, Oral Radiology and Endodontics, Mosby- Yearbook, Inc. 83 (1) 91-100, 1997
Temporo-mandibular disorders (TMDs) can affect the form and function of the temporomandibular joint, masticatory muscles, and dental apparatus. Electronic measurement of mandibular movement and masticatory muscle function provides objective data that are defined by commonly accepted parameters in patients with TMDs; these data can then be used to design and monitor therapy and enhance treatment therapy. In this study, data on 3681 patients with TMD are presented, including electronic test data on 1182 treated patients with TMDs. Electronic jaw tracking was used to record mandibular movement and to compare the presenting and therapeutic dental occlusal positions. Electromyography was used to analyze the resting status of masticatory muscles and occlusal function at presentation and after therapeutic intervention. Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation therapy relaxed masticatory muscles and aided in the determination of a therapeutic occlusal position. The data show a positive correlation between the clinical symptoms of TMD and the presenting occlusion, accompanied by muscle activity. A strong positive correlation also appears to exist between a therapeutic change in the dental occlusion to a neuromuscularly healthy position with use of a precision orthotic appliance and the significant relief of symptoms within 1 month and at 3 months.