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Volume 26 , Issue 1
Winter 2012

Pages 49–58


Peripheral Painful Traumatic Trigeminal Neuropathy: Clinical Features in 91 Cases and Proposal of Novel Diagnostic Criteria

Rafael Benoliel, BDS (Hons), LDS RCS Eng/Yehuda Zadik, DMD, MS/Eli Eliav, DMD, PhD/Yair Sharav, DMD, MS


PMID: 22292140

Aims: To field-test carefully designed criteria for pain following trigeminal nerve trauma. Methods: In order to characterize the clinical phenotype, posttraumatic pain patients were studied and compared with classical trigeminal neuralgia patients (CTN, defined according to the International Headache Society’s criteria). Based on etiology and features, trigeminal pain following trauma was defined as “peripheral painful traumatic trigeminal neuropathy” (PPTTN). Data were analyzed with t tests, ANOVA, chi-square, and regression analyses. Results: A total of 145 patients were included: 91 with PPTTN and 54 with CTN. Findings indicated that PPTTN criteria are clinically applicable in the detection and characterization of relevant cases. In contrast to accepted characteristics for PPTTN, the observed profile included both continuous and paroxysmal pain that was stabbing and/or burning. The quality, duration, and intensity were significantly different from the CTN patients (P < .05). PPTTN was consistently accompanied by trigeminal sensory abnormalities (96%) that were mostly allodynia, hyperor hypoalgesia, and only 1% of the PPTTN cases had anesthesia. Conclusion: Overall, the proposed PPTTN criteria have proven to be clinically useful. In view of these results, modified PPTTN diagnostic criteria are proposed for use in future research. J OROFAC PAIN 2012;26:49–58

Key words: atypical odontalgia, neuropathic pain, persistent idiopathic facial pain, trigeminal neuralgia


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