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Case Reports in Dentistry
Volume 2013, Article ID 242685, 5 pages
Case Report

CT Images of a Severe TMJ Osteoarthritis and Differential Diagnosis with Other Joint Disorders

1School of Dentistry, Franciscan University Center, Andradas Street, 1614, 97010-032 Santa Maria, RS, Brazil
2Department of Stomatology, School of Dentistry, Federal University of Santa Maria, Floriano Peixoto Street, 1184, 97015-372 Santa Maria, RS, Brazil

Received 26 August 2013; Accepted 5 November 2013

Academic Editors: R. A. de Mesquita and E. F. Wright

Copyright © 2013 K. L. Ferrazzo et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common arthritis which affects the human body and can affect the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). The diagnosis of TMJ OA is essentially based on clinical examination. However, laboratory tests and radiographic exams are also useful to exclude other diseases. The diagnosis of OA may be difficult because of other TMJ pathologies that can have similar clinical and radiographic aspects. The purpose of this study was to describe an unusual case of bilateral TMJ OA in an advanced stage and discuss its most common clinical, laboratory, and radiographic findings, focusing on their importance in the differential diagnosis with other TMJ diseases. Erosion, sclerosis, osteophytes, flattening, subchondral cysts, and a reduced joint space were some of the radiographic findings in TMJ OA. We concluded that, for the correct differential diagnosis of TMJ OA, it is necessary to unite medical history, physical examination, laboratory tests, and radiographic findings. Computed tomography is the test of choice for evaluating bone involvement and for diagnosing and establishing the degree of the disease.