2020 Volume 62 Issue 1 Pages 70-74
The aim of this study was to establish an experimental rat model of temporomandibular joint (TMJ) anterior disc displacement (ADD). A pilot study was conducted to determine the most appropriate surgical protocol. In the main experiment, 40 rats were used. Twenty-four rats were subjected to ADD in the right TMJ, and subsequently thereafter six, nine, and nine rats were sacrificed at 1, 4, and 8 weeks, respectively, for gross evaluation. Twelve rats that underwent a sham operation were equally divided and sacrificed at each of the above time points. Four non-treated control rats were sacrificed at the beginning of the study. TMJ blocks were harvested for radiological and histological assessment. Gross examination showed that 14 rats in the ADD group (58.3%) had anterior displacement of the TMJ disc. In the ADD joints, posterior condylar cartilage thickness decreased during the follow-up period; however, there was no significant difference between the sham-treated and ADD joints, or among the follow-up time points (P > 0.05). The anterior condylar cartilage exhibited obvious qualitative alterations. Radiologic signs of osteoarthrosis appeared after ADD surgery, but this became attenuated with time. The model investigated in this study successfully induced ADD in rats, and should be useful for assessment of progressive changes in the TMJ following ADD.