Dental Diagnosis of Rheumatic Disease & TMJ/TMJD
People who have a rheumatic disease, such as rheumatoid arthritis, may develop temporoimandibular joint disorder (TMJ/TMJD) as a secondary condition. Rheumatic diseases refer to a large group of disorders that cause pain, inflammation, and stiffness in the joints, muscles, and bone. Both rheumatoid arthritis and some TMJ disorders involve inflammation of the tissues that line the joints. Examination and consultation can determine the dental diagnosis during your next visit to the dentist office.
Temporal (or cranial) arteritis (also known as large cell or giant cell arteritis) is a rheumatoid disease that results in painful inflammation of blood vessels in the head and neck. It usually occurs after age 50. When the painful symptoms first appear, patients commonly seek TMJ diagnosis from their dentist. If TMJ therapy does not relieve symptoms, then a blood test ordered by your primary physician, a rheumatologist, or ENT specialist is indicated. Ruling out or ruling in the onset of temporal arteritis means you can get on that proper track of treatment as soon as possible.
Symptoms of temporal arteritis may be observed alone or in combination. These are headaches, joint pain, facial pain, fever, and difficulties with vision. Untreated temporal arteritis can become severely painful and lead to blindness.
At Jamie J. Alexander, D.D.S., in Boynton Beach, FL, we are aware of the suffering of our patients and do all we can to properly diagnose painful conditions immediately. This includes making referrals to medical specialists, when needed, based on medical dental evidence. If you are experiencing head, neck, facial, or jaw-specific pain, Dr. Alexander has the expertise you need now. Call for a prompt clinical evaluation and get on the fast track for healing.