An arthroscopy is a surgical technique by which a very small camera is inserted into a joint to see its interior in detail. In addition, it allows the introduction of substances such as corticoids, hyaluronic acid or platelet-rich plasma, and gives the possibility of eliminating adhesions, repositioning the articular disc and eliminating synovial inflammation, among others.
Does the temporomandibular joint scar?
The scar is indistinguishable from a mole, in most cases imperceptible, due to the small size of the camera: 1'9mm in diameter.
The temporomandibular joint arthroscopy approach
This type of intervention can be performed with sedation , although Maxilosur Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery experts prefer to apply general anesthesia to eliminate the discomfort of manipulating the joint during surgery.
Recovery time after the operation
The recovery time is variable among patients, but it is usual that within a maximum period of one week the patient may be living a normal life.
What is arthroscopy for?
Arthroscopy of the temporomandibular joint is indicated in almost all stages of joint disorders .
It is especially useful in cases of limited oral opening and joint pain , and it is more effective the sooner the treatment is done since the tissues will be less inflamed and the manipulation of them is easier.
Also, it serves as a diagnostic tool in cases in which it is not possible to eliminate joint pain with conservative measures.
How to know if arthroscopy is beneficial for the patient?
In general, the clinical examination by an expert professional is sufficient, but it is necessary, in order to confirm the diagnosis of joint pathology, an MRI.
Is it enough with arthroscopy?
Unfortunately, in most patients there is a variable degree of involvement of the chewing muscles. This musculature is affected to "protect" the joint. Therefore, it will be necessary to perform specialized physiotherapy treatment to be able to release this musculature.
Arthroscopy allows to visualize the position of the articular disc with respect to the joint eminence of the temporal bone. The avascular disc should be seen as in the image on the left, white pearly under the white of the eminence, with the insertion of the posterior retrodiscal tissue. When the disc is advanced and out of place, a disc replacement can be made and all the vessels of the inflamed retrodiscal tissue coagulated to eliminate the secretion of chemical mediators of pain.