The effect of disc thickness and trauma on disc surface friction in the porcine temporomandibular joint

J. C. Nickel, L. R. Iwasaki, D. E. Feely, K. D. Stormberg, M. W. Beatty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

35 Scopus citations

Abstract

The pathomechanics of osteoarthritis in the human temporomandibular joint (TMJ) are unknown. Compromised lubrication is a potential factor, but, lubrication within even the normal TMJ is not understood completely. Weeping lubrication is a concept that may be applicable to the TMJ. A characteristic of weeping lubrication is a slow increase in friction during static loading. The rate of increase in friction is related to the rate of lateral movement of synovial fluid away from the loading area. The TMJ disc is expected to be the main source of TMJ lubrication. This study tested two variables, disc thickness and magnitude of trauma to the disc, as factors that can affect the rate of flow of synovial fluid and thus alter lubrication of the disc surfaces. To test these variables, TMJ disc surface friction was measured before and after an impulse load. Before the impulse load, all discs demonstrated a gradual increase in friction during light static loading. The rate of increase in friction was inversely related to the disc thickness (R2= 0.75). After an impulse load of known magnitude and peak force, disc surface friction was higher. The magnitude of this surface friction was correlated with the magnitude of the impulsive blow (R2 = 0.89) and the area of surface damage (R2 = 0.85). Disc thickness was a significant factor in determining the minimal impulse needed to produce higher surface friction (R2= 0.99). These results confirm that disc thickness and trauma to the disc affect surface friction in the TMJ, and therefore may be important factors in compromised lubrication and the development of osteoarthritis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)155-162
Number of pages8
JournalArchives of Oral Biology
Volume46
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2001

Keywords

  • Impulse load
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Pathomechanics
  • Surface friction
  • TMJ disc
  • Trauma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Dentistry(all)
  • Cell Biology

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