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Int Rev Neurobiol. 2011;97:227-50. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-385198-7.00009-6.

Physiological mechanisms of neuropathic pain: the orofacial region.

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Department of Physiology,Nihon University School of Dentistry, 1-8-13 Kandasurugadai, Chiyoda-ku Tokyo 101-8310, Japan.


Neuropathic pain in the orofacial region is the clinical manifestation of trigeminal nerve injury following oral surgeries such as tooth extraction, dental implantation or tooth pulp treatment. Normally non-noxious touching of the facial skin or oral mucosa elicits strong pain named allodynia, and normally noxious stimulation causes intolerable pain named hyperalgesia in the trigeminal neuropathic pain patients. Although the mechanisms underlying trigeminal neuropathic pain have been studied by many researchers, the detailed mechanisms are still unknown. In this chapter, we are focusing on trigeminal neuropathic pain, and describe our recent studies using animal models of trigeminal neuropathic pain. We also present the clinical assessment of trigeminal neuropathic pain patients to develop the appropriate treatment of trigeminal neuropathic pain.

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