Clinical signs and subjective symptoms of temporOmandibular disorders in instrumentalists

Jae Young Jang, Jeong Seung Kwon, Debora H. Lee, Jung Hee Bae, Seong Taek Kim

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27 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Most of the reports on instrumentalists’ experiences of temporomandibular disorders (TMD) have been reported not by clinical examinations but by subjective questionnaires. The aim of this study was to investigate the clinical signs and subjective symptoms of TMD in a large number of instrumentalists objectively. Materials and Methods: A total of 739 musicians from a diverse range of instrument groups completed a TMD questionnaire. Among those who reported at least one symptom of TMD, 71 volunteers underwent clinical examinations and radiography for diagnosis. Results: Overall, 453 participants (61.3%) reported having one or more symptoms of TMD. The most frequently reported symptom was a clicking or popping sound, followed by temporomandibular joint (TMJ) pain, muscle pain, crepitus, and mouth opening limitations. Compared with lower-string instrumentalists, a clicking or popping sound was about 1.8 and 2 times more frequent in woodwind and brass instrumentalists, respectively. TMJ pain was about 3.2, 2.8, and 3.2 times more frequent in upperstring, woodwind, and brass instrumentalists, respectively. Muscle pain was about 1.5 times more frequent in instrumentalists with an elevated arm position than in those with a neutral arm position. The most frequent diagnosis was myalgia or myofascial pain (MFP), followed by disc displacement with reduction. Myalgia or MFP was 4.6 times more frequent in those practicing for no less than 3.5 hours daily than in those practicing for less than 3.5 hours. Conclusion: The results indicate that playing instruments can play a contributory role in the development of TMD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1500-1507
Number of pages8
JournalYonsei medical journal
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Nov

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Yonsei University College of Medicine 2016.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)


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