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Volume 20 , Issue 1
Winter 2006

Pages 24–30

Comorbidity Between Facial Pain, Widespread Pain, and Depressive Symptoms in Young Adults

Kirsi Sipilä, DDS, PhD / Pekka V. Ylöstalo, DDS / Matti Joukamaa, MD, PhD / Matti L. Knuuttila, DDS, PhD

PMID: 16483017

Aims: To assess, firstly, the prevalence of facial pain associated with widespread pain and the prevalence of high levels of depressive symptoms (ie, “depressiveness”) among subjects with this pain condition, and secondly, the association between depressiveness and a facial pain condition. Methods: This study forms part of the Northern Finland Birth Cohort study. The original material consisted of all people whose expected birthdate was in 1966 in Northern Finland. Of these, 5,696 participated in a follow-up study at the age of 31. As part of it, data on facial pain, pain in other areas of the body, depressiveness (measured using the Symptom Checklist-25 depression subscale) and sociodemographic background data were gathered using questionnaires. Prevalence proportion ratios were estimated using log-binomial regression models. Results: Facial pain and simultaneous widespread pain were reported by 8.3% of the subjects (6.6% of men and 9.9% of women), and 27.4% of those with widespread pain were depressive. Comorbidity between facial pain, widespread pain, and depressiveness was found to be particularly prevalent among women. Conclusion: Comorbidity should be taken into account in clinical practice. A multidisciplinary approach is needed, especially for patients with complex pain conditions. J Orofac Pain 2006;20:24–30
Key words: facial pain, depression, widespread pain

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