Biomechanical association of dental and temporomandibular pathology in a medieval Nubian population. Journal Article uri icon



  • An analysis of the relationship between oral pathology and degenerative change at the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) was undertaken on an archaeological sample of 122 adult crania from the Medieval site of Kulubnarti in Sudanese Nubia. The crania were sorted into 2 groups: those demonstrating clearly visible bony changes at the joint (TMJ+) and those without visible change (TMJ-). These groups were compared according to 1) age; 2) sex; 3) active dental pathologies (abscesses, caries, partial socket resorption); 4) tooth loss with complete socket resorption; and 5) dental attrition. No statistically significant association was evident between degenerative change at the TMJ and age, active dental pathologies, or dental attrition; however, sex differences and posterior tooth loss with complete socket resorption revealed a significant correspondence to degenerative TMJ changes. Both of these factors agree with the clinical literature and with biomechanical models (most notably that of Hylander) based upon modern populations. Furthermore, the results support the contention that paleopathological conditions can be analyzed from a clinical and functional biomechanical perspective.

publication date

  • June 1, 1991

has restriction

  • closed

Date in CU Experts

  • October 31, 2013 4:55 AM

Full Author List

  • Sheridan SG; Mittler DM; Van Gerven DP; Covert HH

author count

  • 4

citation count

  • 4

Other Profiles

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0002-9483

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1096-8644

Additional Document Info

start page

  • 201

end page

  • 205


  • 85


  • 2