Hypersensitivity to TMJ implant materials is an issue that we are frequently hearing from TMJ patients. Given this concern we contacted Marco Caicedo, Ph.D., Senior Scientists and COO at Orthopedic Analysis in Chicago, IL. Orthopedic Analysis is an independent diagnostics company dedicated to the quantitative analysis of immune responses to biomaterials (i.e metal allergy to implant materials). We thank Dr. Caicedo for writing this state-of-the-art article.
Metal hypersensitivity (or metal sensitivity) can be defined as an immune reaction that is triggered by specific cells of the body's immune system in response to certain metals (like: nickel, cobalt, and chromium). While metal hypersensitivity can be considered a type of allergy, it does not induce the immediate allergy symptoms that occur when exposed to seasonal or household allergens like pollen, animal dander, mold, etc. Metal hypersensitivities have a delayed onset from the time of exposure to the materials and are not caused by specific antibodies or histamine release that lead to the classical indications of a common allergy like itching, watery eyes, or sneezing. Click here to read the 5 page PDF article.