Temporomandibular joint osteoarthritis and crystal deposition diseases: a study of crystals in synovial fluid lavages in osteoarthritic temporomandibular joints

LC Dijkgraaf*, RSB Liem, LGM de Bont

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    12 Citations (Scopus)


    To study the presence of crystals in synovial fluid lavages of osteoarthritic temporomandibular joints (TMJs): in order to evaluate the possible role of these crystals In the osteoarthritic (OA) process, synovial fluid lavage samples of the upper joint compartment from 44 TMJs were obtained prior to arthroscopy. The OA group consisted of 32 TMJs, The control group consisted of 12 TMJs that had been diagnosed with other nonosteoarthritic conditions. The lavage samples were analysed as wet preparations, unstained and stained, with ordinary light, polarized light and compensated polarized light for the presence of crystals and white blood cells. One sample was prepared for subsequent electron microscopic (EM) examination, Synovial fluid lavage analysis of osteoarthritic TMJs did not show any monosodium urate monohydrate or calcium pyrophosphate dihydrate crystals. However, in three lavages, particles which possibly contained calcium were identified with alizarin red S staining. White blood cells were occasionally seen. Synovial fluid analysis of the lavages of the control TMJs did not reveal ally crystals, EM examination of synovial fluid lavage from an osteoarthritic TMJ failed to clearly show crystal formation. Concurrence of TMJ crystal deposition and OA appears less prominent than in other synovial joints. We conclude that crystals probably do not play an important role in TMJ OA.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)268-273
    Number of pages6
    JournalInternational Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - Aug-1998


    • temporomandibular joint
    • osteoarthritis
    • crystals
    • synovial fluid
    • LIGHT
    • KNEE

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