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Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To evaluate the kinematics and stability of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) of cats and dogs with and without a TMJ replacement (TMJR) prosthesis under simulated bite forces and mouth opening.

ANIMALS

Sixteen cadaver skulls from domestic cats (n = 8) and medium- to large-breed dogs (n = 8).

METHODS

Intact TMJs were tested. Following condylectomy and coronoidectomy, the skulls were fitted with a TMJR prosthesis unilaterally and retested. Prosthesis was similarly implanted in the contralateral TMJ in 4 cats and 4 dogs before retesting. Left and right bite motions were evaluated before bite contact to peak bite force (200 N in dogs, 63 N in cats). Mouth opening motion was recorded. Mandibular displacement under load was evaluated in 3 orthogonal planes. Maximal displacement was compared between TMJR groups and native TMJ. Prosthesis-bone motion of the temporal and mandibular components was evaluated during simulated bites and mouth opening.

RESULTS

TMJR resulted in joint motion not demonstrably different from the native TMJ, with the ability to fully open and close the mouth and with minimal laterotrusion. The TMJR prosthesis demonstrated similar stability after unilateral and bilateral replacement during bite force and with an open mouth. Mean implant-bone motion during bite simulations for the temporal and mandibular TMJR components was ≤ 60 µm in cats and ≤ 30 µm in dogs.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

A novel TMJR can be implanted and allows normal jaw motion. Joint stability is maintained after TMJR implantation in the TMJ of dogs and cats TMJ that is devoid of muscular support.

Open access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research