The Facial Pain Management section at the Pain Center offers comprehensive medical services to ease facial pain that can cause mild to severe discomfort in patients.
As in head and neck pain cases, the first step in correctly diagnosing the problem is to give the patient a number of questionnaires to fill out. A Pain Center dentist will then give the patient a thorough examination. Following that, a battery of medical tests may be performed, including image scans, lab tests and psychological evaluations, as well as nerve blocks and other techniques that can uncover important clues to the causes of the condition.
Once all the data is gathered, a team of doctors from various medical specialties consults together to analyze the information and develop a customized treatment plan to relieve or manage the individual's pain. Because of the complex nature of pain, treatment plans are organized in a very precise way and conducted over a limited period of time, usually six to eight weeks. Patients are not required to stay in the hospital for any of the treatments.
The center's doctors consider the patient a key team member. In eliminating, reducing and managing ongoing pain, success depends highly on the patient's willingness to cooperate fully and follow closely every step in the treatment process.
Commonly Treated Disorders
- Trigeminal neuralgia (pain in the lips, gums, cheek or chin)
- Trigeminal dysesthesia (abnormal feeling in the lips, gums, cheek or chin)
- Post-surgical and post-traumatic face pain
- Glossopharyngeal neuralgia (tongue pain or pain in the pharynx)
- Post-herpetic neuralgia
Facial Musculoskeletal Pain
- Temporomandibular disorders (also know as TJM, or pain in the joint that connects the jaw to the skull)
- Myofascial pain (face muscle disorders causing spasms, limited motion and other symptoms)
- Hemifacial spasm (sudden muscle contraction on one side of the face)
- Torticollis (muscle contraction that causes the neck to twist unnaturally)
- Myoclonus (muscle twitching)
- Blepherospasm (twitching of the eyelid)
- Bells palsy (paralysis of one side of the face)
- Post-surgical paralysis
- Post-stroke paralysis
Range of Treatments
- Pharmacotherapy (medications)
- Physical therapy
- Splint therapy
- Behavioral therapy
- Nerve blocks
- Botulinum injections