The arterial blood supply of the temporomandibular joint: An anatomical study and clinical implications

Antonino Marco Cuccia, Carola Caradonna, Domenico Caradonna, Giuseppe Anastasi, Demetrio Milardi, Angelo Favaloro, Anita De Pietro, Tommaso Maurizio Angileri, Luigi Caradonna, Giuseppina Cutroneo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: The aim of this study was to analyze three-dimensional images of the arterial supply to the temporomandibular joint. Materials and Methods: Ten patients (five men and five women, mean age 36 years) without signs or symptoms of temporomandibular disorders, who underwent contrast-enhanced computed tomographic (CT) scanning with intravenous contrast, were studied. The direct volume rendering technique of CT images was used, and a data set of images to visualize the vasculature of the human temporomandibular joint in three dimensions was created. After elaboration of the data through post-processing, the arterial supply of the temporomandibular joint was studied. Results: The analysis revealed the superficial temporal artery, the anterior tympanic artery, the deep temporal artery, the auricular posterior artery, the transverse facial artery, the middle meningeal artery, and the maxillary artery with their branches as the main arterial sources for the lateral and medial temporomandibular joint. Conclusion: The direct volume rendering technique was found to be successful in the assessment of the arterial supply to the temporomandibular joint. The superficial temporal artery and maxillary artery ran along the lateral and medial sides of the condylar neck, suggesting that these arteries are at increased risk during soft-tissue procedures such as an elective arthroplasty of the temporomandibular joint. (Imaging Sci Dent 2013; 43 : 37-44).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37-44
Number of pages8
JournalImaging Science in Dentistry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • Blood supply
  • Computer generated
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Temporomandibular joint
  • Three-Dimensional imaging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dentistry(all)
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology


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