Mode i and mode III fractures in intermediate zone of full-thickness porcine temporomandibular joint discs

Mark W. Beatty, Rebecca H. Hohl, Jeffrey C. Nickel, Laura R. Iwasaki, Ramana M. Pidaparti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The aim of this study was to assess the critical energy required to induce flaw propagation in the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disc when tensile and shear stresses were applied. J-integrals were measured for Mode I and III fractures because excessive tensile and shear stresses promote disc failure. Single edge notch (Mode I) and trouser tear (Mode III) specimens were constructed with flaws oriented parallel to the predominant anteroposteriorly oriented collagen fibers of the TMJ disc. Disks with and without an impulsive pre-load of 3 N s were studied to compare impact-damaged and healthy tissues. Results demonstrated that impulsive loading stiffened the tissues and significantly increased the Mode I fracture energy (J IC) but not Mode III (J IIIC) (p 0.05). J IC and J IIIC values were similar for undamaged tissues, but J IC values were 2.3 times higher for impulsively loaded tissues (p 0.05). This suggests that when flaws are introduced through impact, the TMJ disc responds by requiring more energy for tensile flaw extension. This research is a first step towards characterizing the mechanical microenvironment that initiates joint disease. This characterization is essential for successful integration of engineered replacement tissues for damaged TMJs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)801-812
Number of pages12
JournalAnnals of Biomedical Engineering
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Cartilage
  • Fracture mechanics.
  • Impact damage
  • J-integral

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering


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