Styloid process elongation and temporomandibular disorders: a pilot study in the Albanian population



Introduction. Patients with an elongated styloid process (SP) presented related symptoms
as deep neck pain, foreign body sensation in the throat, pain on turning the head, and odynophagia. These symptoms are the source of misdiagnosis of this syndrome since these clinical manifestations are like those of temporomandibular disorders (TMD). This study aimed to investigate a possible correlation between the TMD and elongation of the SP.
Materials and methods. The case-control study included 60 participants between 25-60
years of age and was carried out at University Dental Clinic, Department of Maxillo-
Facial Surgery, Tirana, Albania during the period November 2020 – March 2021. The study group consisted of 30 patients diagnosed with TMD (21 females and 9 males) and the control group consisted of 30 individuals without TMD (18 females and 12 males). The diagnosis of TMD was performed according to Research Diagnostic Criteria for Temporomandibular Disorders axis I and the SP measurement was performed by a single experienced examiner. The normal range of SP length was considered 20-30 mm.

Results. SP >30mm was found in 86.67% of patients with TMD group and 43.33% of individuals of the control group. There was a significant difference between the TMD group and the control group in regards to SP length (p <0.001).
Conclusions. There is a significant association between the elongation of the SP and TMD. Dental clinicians should recognize the morphological changes in the length of SP on the panoramic radiographs, which could be a hint in the proper diagnosis of TMD.

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Merita Bardhoshi - Faculty of Dental Medicine, University of Medicine Tirana

Alketa Qafmolla

Silvana Beraj

Dea Bardhoshi

How to Cite
Bardhoshi, M., Qafmolla, A. ., Beraj, S. ., & Bardhoshi, D. . (2022). Styloid process elongation and temporomandibular disorders: a pilot study in the Albanian population. Annali dell’Istituto Superiore Di Sanità, 58(1), 42–45. Retrieved from
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