Eminence Development of the Postnatal Human Temporomandibular Joint

J. C. Nickel, K. R. McLachlan, D. M. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations


The objective of this study was to analyze postnatal eminence development quantitatively, as a first step in defining the relationship between loading of the TMJ and eminence development. A sample of human osteological remains provided the temporal bones of forty-nine (49) individuals of ages between birth and twenty years. An angular measurement technique permitted quantification of the degree of eminence development of each individual. It was concluded that: (i) the TMJ eminence reaches more than 50% of mature size, and exhibits mature morphology, by the time of completion of eruption of the primary dentition; (ii) the maximum velocity of development of the eminence takes place before three years of age; and (iii) the velocity of development of the eminence is reduced at about five years of age, and slowly diminishes to zero by the middle to late teens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)896-902
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of dental research
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1988
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dentistry(all)


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