Comparison of two physiotherapy programmes for rehabilitation after temporomandibular joint arthroscopy

W. A. Abboud, N. Yarom, R. Yahalom, M. Joachim, S. Reiter, O. Koren, H. Elishoov

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9 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to compare two physiotherapy programmes for rehabilitation after temporomandibular joint (TMJ) arthroscopy. The medical files of 137 consecutive patients diagnosed with closed lock and treated by arthroscopic lysis and lavage were analyzed retrospectively. Sixty-eight patients were rehabilitated with gradually increasing range of motion self-exercises (gradual programme) and 69 patients were rehabilitated with immediate full range of motion self-exercises (immediate programme). The outcome variables were maximum mouth opening (MMO) and pain (on a visual analogue scale). The postoperative measurements taken at 1 month, 6 months, and last follow-up examination available (mean of 10 months postoperative) were analyzed and compared between the two groups. The results showed significantly better MMO and pain outcomes for the immediate group than for the gradual group at the 1-month and 6-month postoperative evaluations. The results of the two groups were comparable at the last follow-up examination available. It is concluded that after arthroscopic treatment of closed lock of the TMJ, a physiotherapy programme consisting of immediate postoperative full range of motion mobilizations achieves better results (in terms of pain and mouth opening) than a physiotherapy programme consisting of gradual and controlled increases in range of motion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)755-761
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2018
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 International Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons


  • arthroscopy
  • closed lock
  • physical therapy
  • physiotherapy
  • temporomandibular disorder


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