A comparative study of three therapeutic modalities in a temporomandibular disorder (TMD) population.

C. E. Nemcovsky*, E. Gazit, V. Serfati, M. Gross

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A comparative study of three treatment modalities, pharmacologic, occlusal appliance, and their combined use, was conducted to test their therapeutic efficacy on 61 temporomandibular disorder (TMD) patients. Alprazolam (Xanax) was used for the pharmacologic treatment; the occlusal appliance therapy consisted of a flat maxillary stabilization splint. Of the 61 patients, 19 received Alprazolam, 30 received occlusal appliance therapy, and 12 received combined therapy. Subjects were examined at two-week intervals for two months. Only 42 patients attended all follow-up visits. Eight parameters were studied: severity of pain, periodicity of pain, self-evaluated stress, muscle sensitivity to palpation, joint sensitivity to palpation, joint noises, limitation of opening, and limitation of lateral movement. No significant difference was found between the treatment modalities for most of the parameters. All three proved to be effective. Alprazolam increased the restricted mandibular movement, was least effective on joint sensitivity to palpation, and had no effect on joint noises. The combined treatment approach not only failed to prove superior to the other treatments, but showed less improvement in some parameters, possibly due to the small sample.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)148-155; discussion 156-157
JournalCranio - Journal of Craniomandibular Practice
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1992


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