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Functional assessment of the stomatognathic system. Part 1: The role of static elements of analysis

Vaucher, Paul
Awai, Lea
Papini, Andrea
Di Bella, Enrico
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Published in Quintessence international (Hanover Park, Ill. : Online). 2021, vol. 52, no. 10, p. 920-932

To review the elements of static analysis in the functional assessment of the stomatognathic system, as promoted for more than a century by gnathologists, and summarize the available scientific evidence, including anthropologic observations.

A thorough search was conducted using PubMed, the Cochrane Library database, and Google Scholar. From peer-reviewed articles and other scientific literature, up-to-date information addressing three topics was identified: (a) the anthropologic perspective with particular consideration for the role of progressive dental wear over time, (b) descriptions of gnathologic principles and evidence on their scientific validity, and (c) the methodologic inaccuracies introduced by seeking to correlate variables directly rather than allowing for causal inference.

For decades gnathology attempted to describe a structure-function correlation within the stomatognathic system by means of a model whose principles were static and mechanistic references. No scientific validation was ever achieved, placing clinical and research consensus out of reach.

A historical perspective helps to place the fundamentals of gnathology into context: They were conceived to solve technical difficulties but were then assumed to be physiologic stereotypes. This misconception led to a decades-long promotion of mechanistic theories to describe oral function, but the evidence available today supports a more flexible and adaptable approach. Gnathologic arguments have been relegated to become exclusively of technical relevance in oral rehabilitation.

Keywords Dental occlusionGnathologyOral functionReal-world dataTemporomandibular disorderTooth wearHumansStomatognathic System
PMID: 34595913
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Research group Groupe Krejci Ivo (médecine dentaire) (240)
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SARATTI, Carlo Massimo et al. Functional assessment of the stomatognathic system. Part 1: The role of static elements of analysis. In: Quintessence international (Hanover Park, Ill. : Online), 2021, vol. 52, n° 10, p. 920-932. doi: 10.3290/j.qi.b2077573 https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:162540

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Deposited on : 2022-08-05

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