The aim of this study was to perform a literature review regarding the role of hyaluronic acid (HA) in the homeostasis and therapeutics of temporomandibular joint (TMJ) osteoarthritis (OA). The TMJ has characteristics that give it special adaptation and recovery abilities, where HA plays a fundamental role in helping to maintain joint homeostasis, which is affected in pathological processes like OA. OA is a chronic degenerative multi-factor disease that can affect all the components of the synovial joints, causing degradation of the articular cartilage, extracellular matrix and breakage in the HA molecules. HA is a non-branched linear polysaccharide with viscosupplementation, anti-inflammatory, lubrication and pain relief effects; it also activates the intrinsic repair processes of the cartilage and normalizes the endogenous production of HA by the synoviocytes. In recent years, the therapeutic use of HA has shown evidence that supports its application in TMJ OA, improving viscosupplementation capacity, acting at the cellular and molecular levels, reducing various inflammatory mediators and improving the reparative characteristics. Its use has been studied in animal models and in humans. However, no consensus has been reached in terms of concentrations, dose, application frequency or molecular weight to be used.
KEY WORDS: Hyaluronic acid; Osteoarthritis; Temporomandibular joint; Temporomandibular disorders; Viscosupplementation.