Send to

Choose Destination
Angle Orthod. 2010 Sep;80(5):925-32. doi: 10.2319/010410-10.1.

Interventions for pain during fixed orthodontic appliance therapy. A systematic review.

Author information

State Key Laboratory of Oral Disease and Department of Orthodontics, West China School of Dentistry, Sichuan University, Chengdu, China.



To compare the different methods of pain control intervention during fixed orthodontic appliance therapy.


A computerized literature search was performed in MEDLINE (1966-2009), The Cochrane Library (Issue 4, 2009), EMBASE (1984-2009), and CNKI (1994-2009) to collect randomized controlled trials (RCTs) for pain reduction during orthodontic treatment. Data were independently extracted by two reviewers and a quality assessment was carried out. The Cochrane Collaboration's RevMan5 software was used for data analysis. The Cochrane Oral Health Group's statistical guidelines were followed.


Twenty-six RCTs were identified and six trials including 388 subjects were included. Meta-analysis showed that ibuprofen had a pain control effect at 6 hours and at 24 hours after archwire placement compared with the placebo group. The standard mean difference was -0.47 and -0.48, respectively. There was no difference in pain control between ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and aspirin. Other analgesics such as tenoxicam and valdecoxib had relatively lower visual analog scale (VAS) scores in pain perception. Low-level laser therapy (LLLT) was also an effective approach for pain relief with VAS scores of 3.30 in the LLLT group and 7.25 in the control group.


Analgesics are still the main treatment modality to reduce orthodontic pain despite their side effects. Some long-acting nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and cyclo-oxygenase enzyme (COX-2) inhibitors are recommended for their comparatively lesser side effects. Their preemptive use is promising. Other approaches such as LLLT have aroused researchers' attention.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Allen Press, Inc.
Loading ...
Support Center