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November JADA examines TMJ osteoarthritis treatments

October 26, 2018

By Michelle Manchir

Journal of the American Dental Association November 2018 coverAlthough platelet-rich plasma and platelet-rich growth factor with arthrocentesis or arthroscopy appear to be promising treatments for temporomandibular joint osteoarthritis, more research is needed on the topic, according to the cover story of the November issue of The Journal of the American Dental Association.

For the article “Use of Platelet-Rich Plasma, Platelet-Rich Growth Factor with Arthrocentesis or Arthroscopy to Treat Temporomandibular Joint Osteoarthritis,” researchers conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to determine whether arthrocentesis or arthroscopy combined with platelet-rich plasma or platelet-rich growth factor injection compared with no injection, saline injection or hyaluronic acid injection reduced pain and increased maximum mouth opening in patients with TMJ osteoarthritis.

After screening 36 abstracts, the authors included five studies involving 285 patients with TMJ osteoarthritis. They concluded that while results showed that arthrocentesis or arthroscopy with platelet-rich plasma or platelet-rich growth factor, saline or hyaluronic acid injections reduced pain and increased mouth opening, the evidence was of very low quality and that further studies were needed to confirm these results.

“We found a significant improvement in pain in patients treated with platelet-rich plasma or platelet-rich growth factor and arthrocentesis or arthroscopy compared to control group, but no difference with patients treated with hyaluronic acid,” said three the study’s authors, Dr. Mary Charles Haigler, Dr. Mariela Padilla and Reyes Enciso, Ph.D., in a statement. “These findings are encouraging, but are subject to change with further research because the very low quality of evidence due to small number of studies and patients and high risk of bias. … We would like to encourage further research on this topic so that risks and benefits can be further identified, and applications and protocols associated with this treatment can be better defined.”

To read the full article, visit

Other highlights of the November issue of JADA include an investigation of decompression as a definitive treatment for mandibular cysts associated with impacted third molars; an assessment of the readability of online endodontic information in English and Spanish; and a look at the pathway from cognitive impairment to caries in older adults.

Each month, JADA articles are published online at in advance of the print publication.