Article: Volume 48 Number 4 Page 285 - April 2021

  Dent Update 2021; 48: 285-286  Read article

Oral surgery:  Synovial chondromatosis of the temporomandibular joint and its management

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Abstract: Synovial chondromatosis is a condition in which loose fragments of cartilage develop in the synovial membrane of joints due to metaplasia of the subsynovial connective tissue. The resulting symptoms are similar to those of temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction. Clinical diagnosis can therefore be challenging. Synovial chondromatosis rarely occurs in the TMJ as its predilection is towards larger joints. A systematic review up until June 2010 reported a total 241 cases of TMJ synovial chondromatosis. We present two cases of TMJ synovial chondromatosis seen and treated in our department.

Clinical relevance: Awareness of TMJ synovial chondromatosis can enable patients to receive appropriate management before progression of the condition.

Author notes: S Jannati, BChD, MFDS RCPS(Glas), Clinical Fellow Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. C Pretzl, MD, Consultant Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. N Ali, BDS, MBBS, FRCS(OMFS), Consultant in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. S Holmes, BDS, MBBS, FDS RCS (Eng), FRCS(CSIG), FRCS (OMFS), Professor of Craniofacial Trauma and Consultant in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Royal London Hospital, Bart’s Health NHS Trust, London email:

Objective: The reader should have an understanding of the symptoms of synovial chondromatosis, and know when to refer to avoid delayed presentation.