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Spec Care Dentist. 2012 Jan-Feb;32(1):15-20. doi: 10.1111/j.1754-4505.2011.00225.x.

A review of the oro-dento-facial characteristics of hereditary sensory and autonomic neuropathy type III (familial dysautonomia).

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Pediatric Dentistry Clinic, Barzilai Medical Center, Ashkelon, Israel.


The oro-dento-facial features and dysfunction of children with hereditary sensory and autonomic neuropathy type III, known as familial dysautonomia or Riley-Day syndrome, was first described in the scientific literature in 1949. They include dental trauma; dental and soft tissue self-mutilation; normal dental age; normal sequence and timing of eruption and exfoliation of teeth; smaller tooth size; different and disproportional tooth components; normal alveolar bone height; small jaws, mild crowding, and malocclusions. These persons have craniofacial morphology that is different from accepted norms but they resemble norms of their ethnic origin. The subjects can have gray, pale, shiny faces with an asymmetric suffering expression; frontal bossing, with eventual hypertelorism and narrow lips; a low-caries rate; drooling, and hypersalivation. They can have changes in salivary composition and content, which influences plaque and calculus and increases the risk of gingival and periodontal diseases. They also have difficulty in controlling oral muscles; a progressive decrease in number of tongue fungiform papillae, accompanied by lack of taste buds; and specific dysgeusia, but a normal sense of smell.

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