Learn about getting a comprehensive orofacial pain evaluation and become an educated patient.
To learn about neuropathic facial pain, it helps to know a little about how the affected nerves are laid out. The cranial nerves are 12 pairs of nerves that can be seen on the surface of the brain. The trigeminal nerves are among these pairs, and they let you feel sensations in your face. One nerve runs down each side of your head.
The sets of cranial nerves arise directly from the brain. The first two nerves (olfactory and optic) arise from the cerebrum, whereas the remaining ten emerge from the brain stem. The cranial nerves are considered components of the peripheral nervous system. However, on a structural level, the olfactory, optic, and terminal nerves are more accurately considered part of the central nervous system.
The names of the cranial nerves relate to their function and they are also numerically identified in roman numerals (I-XII).
Some of these nerves bring information from the sense organs to the brain, others control muscles, or are connected to glands or internal organs such as the heart and lungs. Cranial nerves can transmit two types of information:
The trigeminal nerve is the 5th cranial nerve, supplying sensation to the face, eyes, nose, lips, teeth, gums, part of the tongue, and part of the scalp. There are two trigeminal nerves, one on each side of the face; the trigeminal nerve is the largest and most complex of the 12 cranial nerves. Each side contains three branches, or divisions (diagram). From the top, they are the ophthalmic (V1), the maxillary (V2) and mandibular (V3). You may experience pain in one or more of the areas of your face, head and neck, depending on which nerves are affected. Each trigeminal nerve splits into three branches, controlling the feeling for different parts of your face:
Nerves power your entire body. They can be damaged by injury or an illness such as diabetes. Neuropathy is a disorder of nerve damage, affecting your ability to feel and move. Exactly how your body and your movement are affected depends on where in the body the damaged nerves are located. When nerves in the brain or brainstem are affected, it is called cranial neuropathy.
Dr. Derek Steinbacher, Director of Craniofacial Surgery, Yale Medicine, Chief of Oral Maxillofacial Surgery and Dentistry, FPA Medical Advisory Board member, reviews migraines, TMJ disorders, and dental pain.
Dr. Wolfgang Liedtke will discuss medical treatment of trigeminal neuropathic pain with Dr. Jeffrey Brown.
Wolfgang Liedtke, M.D. Ph.D. is Chair of Neurology, Global Development Scientific Council at Regeneron Pharmaceuticals. Prior to that, he was Professor in the Departments of Neurology, Anesthesiology and Neurobiology; Attending Physician, Duke Neurology Clinics and Clinics for Innovative Pain Therapy, serving patients there for over 17 years.
Complementary health approaches, also referred to as complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), integrative health therapies, and other terms, refers to a group of diverse medical and health care systems, practices, […]
Dr. Mark Linskey, Dr. Richard Zimmerman, and Megan Hamilton discuss what to look for in the decision making process when you are trying to find a doctor and treatment for facial pain.
Dr. Larry Arbeitman will answer: What is Upper Cervical Chiropractic? How does is differ from traditional Chiropractic methods? Learn about the connection between the Upper Cervical Spine and Facial Pain, research and case studies, what you can expect from UCC and how you can integrate it into your healthcare plan. You will also be able to ask Dr. Arbeitman your questions during this live presentation.
In this webinar, Dr. Jeffrey Brown, Chairman of the FPA Medical Advisory Board, talks about the top questions patients and their loved ones have regarding trigeminal neuralgia.
Dr. Raymond Sekula, Professor of Neurosurgery at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Director of the Cranial Nerve Disorders Program at UPMC, and FPA Medical Advisory Board member reviews the challenges that can complicate the care of people with neuropathic facial pain.
Dr. Leesa Scott-Morrow will discuss anxiety in people with facial pain.This webinar will introduce the brain mechanisms that are involved in the experience of fear and anxiety, including discussion of […]
Dr. Jeffrey Brown, Chairman of the Facial Pain Association’s Medical Advisory Board, interviews Dr. Hossein Ansari on medical causes of neuropathic facial pain.
Can Hormones Affect Facial Pain? Some women experience a change in their facial pain at various points in their menstrual cycles, when taking or stopping hormonal methods of birth control, […]
Dr. Deborah Barrett offers a framework and tools to help people improve their quality of life, just as they are, while also reducing pain and suffering. Her work draws from empirically based cognitive and behavioral interventions, and she practices what she preaches every day.
Neuropathic facial pain is diagnosed almost exclusively by the individual’s description of the symptoms. Dr. Kim Burchiel developed a list of questions to help doctors determine exactly which classification may describe a […]
Facial pain can be described in many words…but if you had to choose just one, what would it be? The YPC recently shared how we would describe TN in one word and how we plan to overcome TN.
Dr. Julie Pilitsis, Chair of the Department of Neuroscience & Experimental Therapeutics Professor of Neurosurgery Neuroscience and Experimental Therapeutics, Albany Medical Center and FPA Medical Advisory Board member presents an overview of trigeminal neuralgia and other neuropathic facial pains.
Dr. Konstantin Slavin discusses neuromodulation, a procedure used to treat and enhance quality of life in individuals who suffer severe chronic illness due to persistent pain.
Jennifer M. Wagner, Executive Director of the Western Pain Society, explains the brain-body connection with an emphasis on pain response and provides a list of strategies for those affected by chronic pain.
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