OBJECTIVE: To implement high-resolution morphologic and quantitative magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) using ultrashort time-to-echo (UTE) techniques in cadavers and volunteers. METHODS: This study was approved by the institutional review board. TMJs of cadavers and volunteers were imaged on a 3-T MR system. High-resolution morphologic and quantitative sequences using conventional and UTE techniques were performed in cadaveric TMJs. Morphologic and UTE quantitative sequences were performed in asymptomatic and symptomatic volunteers. RESULTS: Morphologic evaluation demonstrated the TMJ structures in open- and closed-mouth position. UTE techniques facilitated the visualization of the disc and fibrocartilage. Quantitative UTE MRI was successfully performed ex vivo and in vivo, reflecting the degree of degeneration. There was a difference in the mean UTE T2* values between asymptomatic and symptomatic volunteers. CONCLUSIONS: MRI evaluation of the TMJ using UTE techniques allows characterization of the internal structure and quantification of the MR properties of the disc. Quantitative UTE MRI can be performed in vivo with short scan times.
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