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International journal of interdisciplinary dentistry

versión impresa ISSN 2452-5596versión On-line ISSN 2452-5588


MONCADA, Gustavo; MILLAS, Rodrigo  y  VALDES, Constanza. Morphology and Pathophysiology of the TMJ Fibrocartilage. Systemic review. Int. j interdiscip. dent. [online]. 2020, vol.13, n.3, pp.151-156. ISSN 2452-5596.

The aim:

of the present study was to carry out an updated review of the morphology, physiopathology and molecular aspects of the TMJ fibrocartilage in humans.


electronic/manual search was performed with the MeSH terms “TMJ” and “fibrocartilage”, with no date or language limit. The defined outcomes were: morphology of the fibrocartilage, physiopathology of the articular fibrocartilage, fibrocartilage molecular modelers and fibrocartilage deterioration.


1071 articles were identified and after exclusions, 16 full-texts were selected for review. The fibrocartilage (FC) that covers the surfaces of the TMJ is a critical tissue in the establishment and progression rate of degenerative bone diseases; clinically, its discontinuities are associated with pain, noise and functional limitation.


In spite of the methodological diversity, heterogeneity of objectives and different characteristics of the patients included in the review, TMJ fibrocartilage, as avascular tissue, determines a physiology of low reparative capacity, observed with greater frequency of FC damage in women of fertile age, associated with a greater amount of hormonal receptors. The physiopathology shows that the immune reactions increase some MMPs, interleukins and FNTα, which are linked to the degradation of the extracellular matrix, FC cellular and morphological destruction and define the inflammatory and degenerative symptomatology of patients who present TMJ arthralgia´s and synovitis.

Palabras clave : TMJ; Joint fibrocartilage; Degenerative joint disease; Hormone modulation.

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