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, 44 (2), 206-211

Persistent Dentoalveolar Pain Disorder: A Comprehensive Review


Persistent Dentoalveolar Pain Disorder: A Comprehensive Review

Alberto Malacarne et al. J Endod.


Introduction: Persistent dentoalveolar pain of idiopathic origin represents a diagnostic challenge for the dentist and physician alike. Disagreement on taxonomy and diagnostic criteria presents a significant limit to the advancement of research in the field. Patients struggle with a lack of knowledge by dental and medical professionals, diagnostic delays, and unnecessary treatments.

Methods: A PubMed search was performed as of January 1, 2017 by using the terms atypical odontalgia, phantom tooth pain, persistent idiopathic facial pain, painful posttraumatic trigeminal neuropathy, idiopathic toothache, persistent dentoalveolar pain disorder, nonodontogenic tooth pain, and continuous neuropathic orofacial pain. Three hundred forty-five abstracts were screened, and 128 articles that were pertinent to the topic went through full-text reading.

Results: Case reports and narrative reviews constitute the majority of available literature. Several retrospective case-control studies investigated the clinical characteristics, pathophysiology, and diagnostic processes. Treatment strategies were evaluated in only 7 open-label and 2 randomized controlled trials.

Conclusions: Persistent dentoalveolar pain disorder is likely neuropathic in origin, but pathophysiological mechanisms to explain the onset and persistence of the pain are still far from understood. A correct diagnosis should be established before treatments are performed. Researchers should reach an agreement on the diagnostic criteria to enable a coherent research path to better understand the condition and reduce patient suffering.

Keywords: Atypical odontalgia; idiopathic toothache; nonodontogenic toothache; painful posttraumatic trigeminal neuropathy; persistent dentoalveolar pain disorder.

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