Definition A broken jaw is a break in the jaw bone. A dislocated jaw means the lower part of the jaw has moved out of its normal position at one or both joints where the jaw bone connects to the skull (temporomandibular joints). Alternative Names Dislocated jaw; Fractured jaw; Broken jaw; TMJ dislocation Considerations A broken or dislocated jaw usually heals completely after treatment. However, the jaw may become dislocated again in the future. Complications may include: Airway blockage Bleeding Breathing blood or food into the lungs Difficulty eating (temporary) Difficulty talking (temporary) Infection of the jaw or face Jaw joint ( TMJ ) pain and other problems Problems aligning the teeth Causes The most common cause of a broken or dislocated jaw is injury to the face. This may be due to: Assault Industrial accident Motor vehicle accident Recreational or sports injury
Reader Question: What is Bisphosphonate-Associated Osteonecrosis of the Jaw (ONJ)? How common is ONJ, and what are its risk factors?
Not a day goes by when these questions do not come up. It appears that a significant amount of lawyers’ advertisements as well as newspaper and magazine articles have raised public opinion and thought on the matter. Recent news coverage focuses on new lawsuits against Merck, the maker of Fosamax (alendronate sodium) , for causing deterioration of the mouth and exposure of the jaw bone. Here is a summary of the information I have been telling my patients as well as what has been released by the American College of Rheumatology.
Intravenous Bisphosphonate There are 368 cases of bisphosphonate-associated ONJ published between 1966 and January 31, 2006. Sixty percent of cases occurred after oral surgery for dental extraction or other dentoalveolar surgery, whereas the remainder occurred spontaneously, some in patients wearing dentures. Most ...
Recently, an article appeared in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute , suggesting that patients treated with intravenous bisphosphonates are at greater risk of jaw or facial bone deterioration or infection. But the authors were not sure whether the bisphosphonates caused the bone problem, or whether these patients whose immune systems are suppressed were naturally more prone to such complications. In fact, there are those who question whether some of the jaw abnormalities found in this study which were not infections were osteonecrosis. A few months ago, there was quite a bit of media attention regarding an association between bisphosphonates and osteonecrosis of the jaw and facial bones. The drugs used in this study were pamidronate and zoledronic acid.
Osteonecrosis refers to bone death; and the bone involved cannot repair itself because it lacks the normal blood supply. There have been hundreds of cases reported of osteonecrosis of the ...
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