OBJECTIVES The purpose of this study was to evaluate both reliability and validity of the assessment of the shape of the mandibular condyle in panoramic images of the TMJ. STUDY DESIGN Forty subjects were included and were examined according to the Research Diagnostic Criteria for Temporomandibular Disorders. Panoramic radiographs (PRs) and magnetic resonance images (MRIs) were completed for all subjects. Both MRIs and PRs were rated by raters blinded to the clinical diagnosis. Kappa statistics were used to compare the results of the raters of the PRs. Additionally, the specificity and the sensitivity of the PRs were calculated for 2 scenarios: one with MRI and the other with clinical findings as the gold standard. RESULTS The sensitivity was 0.94 (specificity = 0.45) for the assumption that MRI is the gold standard and 0.86 (specificity = 0.49) for the assumption that the clinical examination is the gold standard. For reliability, the results for kappa ranged from 0.06 to 0.327. CONCLUSION It can be concluded that PRs are not a reliable method of accurately judging the shape of the mandibular condyle.