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Effect of Hard Versus Soft Occlusal Splint on the Management of Myofascial Pain: Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis


  • Prosthodontics Department, Faculty of Dentistry, Cairo University, 11 Saraya El-manial St. Cairo – 11553, Egypt


Objectives: The project is to compare the pain intensity and muscle tenderness of hard versus soft Occlusal Splints of at least 3 months follow-up. Methods/Statistical Analysis: PubMed and Cochrane CENTRAL databases electronic searches were performed. Randomized Controlled Trials (RCTs) which compared hard versus soft Occlusal Splint were only articles to be included. Titles and abstract screened, data extracted and articles assessed for risk of bias. Meta-analyses were performed for two of included RCTs that have similar outcome measures. Findings: from 7 relevant studies identified, 3 randomized controlled trials fulfilled the inclusion criteria. The meta-analysis revealed that, no significant differences in pain intensity and muscle tenderness reduction for patients with Myofascial pain treated by hard versus soft Occlusal Splints. The included RCTs were considered of high risk of bias that indicate no enough evidence to reach robust conclusion which group is superior over the other. Application/Improvements: Well-designed RCTs should be conducted and the outcome measures evaluation should be standardized between studies to reach robust conclusion.


Myofascial Pain, Muscle Activity, Occlusal Splint, Systematic Review, Temporomandibular Disorders.

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