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It is well recognised that the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) may be affected by rheumatoid or psoriatic arthritides and ankylosing spondylitis. Interestingly, however, calcium pyrophosphate dihydrate (CPPD) crystal deposition is unusual in this site, and authors of several large case series of CPPD disease failed to report any acute attacks affecting this joint.1,2 As far as we are aware, only infrequent reports of CPPD crystal deposition in the TMJ have been published.3–7 We therefore present the following case to highlight a possible differential diagnosis for patients presenting with TMJ pain and/or swelling.
A 57 year old man presented with an acute onset of severe pain and swelling affecting his right TMJ, on a background of chronic right sided TMJ discomfort. There were no associated systemic features. The patient had a past history of hypertension, hypercholesterolaemia, lumbar spine osteoarthritis, fifty (50) pack year smoking …