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The association between research diagnostic criteria for temporomandibular disorder findings and biting force and endurance in patients with temporomandibular disorders



The association between research diagnostic criteria for temporomandibular disorder findings and biting force and endurance in patients with temporomandibular disorders



Pain Medicine 2(1): 35-45



This study was designed to evaluate the association between examination findings based on Research Diagnostic Criteria for Temporomandibular Disorders and performances on bite force and endurance tasks. Subjects were 126 patients with temporomandibular disorder and 34 pain-free controls. A subset of patients with temporomandibular disorder (n = 56) also were evaluated following a brief conservative 4-week treatment intervention. A multivariate analysis of variance indicated that female patients (P <.001) but not males (P =.17) had lower bite forces than age- and gender-matched controls. Dental examination findings were significantly but modestly predictive of bite task performance (R2 = 0.175), with higher joint pain and smaller maximum unassisted jaw opening associated with lower bite force. The brief treatment interventions resulted in both self-reported and clinically determined improvements. Clinical and self-reported improvement significantly predicted pre-post treatment changes in biting force among female subjects (R2 = 0.237). Specifically, reduction in joint palpation pain and self-reported pain (McGill Pain Questionnaire short form) were the primary predictors of increases in bite force. The improvement in biting force was modest (mean = 7 lb), and the force levels of female patients remained lower than those of control subjects. Treatment did not significantly increase endurance time. The brief conservative treatments used resulted in improvements in pain and jaw opening, and 81.8% of patients reported moderate to major improvement. The modest association of the bite task with Research Diagnostic Criteria for Temporomandibular Disorders examination findings and treatment improvement in this heterogeneous sample suggests that the bite and endurance tasks have limited diagnostic utility and sensitivity to treatment effects.

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Accession: 050574135

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 15102316

DOI: 10.1046/j.1526-4637.2001.002001035.x


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