We are pleased to announce that the Cincinnati Center for Corrective Jaw Surgery is now able to care for patients who suffer from jaw joint problems commonly known as TMJ or TMD with arthroscopic surgery.

What is TMJ/TMD?

TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint – the jaw joint. TMD stands for temporomandibular dysfunction. TMD relates to pain, limited opening, bite problems from muscle overloading and conditions that range from clicking, popping and locking of the jaws to rheumatoid arthritis.

Arthroscopic Surgery

While arthroscopic surgery on large joints like the knee and shoulder is standard fare and widely available, arthroscopic surgery on smaller joints like the TMJ is less common. Like other joints, the symptoms described above can be decreased by cleaning out inflammation in the joint and placing medications in it.

Illustration of the TMJ

The McCain Technique and the McCain Arthroscope

Dr. Lee was trained by Dr. Joseph McCain, broadly recognized as one of the founding fathers of TMJ arthroscopy. The McCain arthroscope is designed as the smallest scope available for TMJ arthroscopy and it delivers superior optics and mobility in the joint space. The McCain Technique is minimally invasive, quick, safe and very effective. Over 90% of patients with pain and limited opening find measurable relief.

Our Treatment Algorithm – Conservative Therapy First

According to the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, 35 million people in this country suffer from varying degrees of TMJ dysfunction or TMD. Approximately 10% of this group will seek treatment for their symptoms. The majority of those patients can be well managed with conservative therapy – therapy that can be initiated and managed by family dentists. Thus, our treatment algorithm begins with the dentist. To be sure, arthroscopic surgery of the TMJ should be reserved for cases of TMD that are not resolved with conservative treatment. Proper vetting of the patient and strict adherence to accepted conservative management principles are key.

Click here to read our TMJ case study.