What is temporomandibular joint (TMJ) syndrome?

Updated: Jun 02, 2020
  • Author: Vivian Tsai, MD, MPH, FACEP; Chief Editor: Herbert S Diamond, MD  more...
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Answer

The temporal mandibular joint (TMJ) is the synovial joint that connects the jaw to the skull. These two joints are located just in front of each ear. Each joint is composed of the condyle of the mandible, an articulating disk, and the articular tubercle of the temporal bone. The movements allowed are side to side, up and down, as well as protrusion and retrusion. This complicated joint, along with its attached muscles, allows movements needed for speaking, chewing, and making facial expressions.


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