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Atypical Facial Pain

Do you feel pain in your face for at least six months? If you do, probably you have a disorder which is usually called as Atypical Facial Pain.

There are so many causes and varieties of facial pain, which make your doctor hard to identify the kind of facial pain their patients have. Inside this article, we provide you information about facial pain named Atypical Facial Pain.

Definition
Back to the question above, Atypical Facial Pain occurs when you feel pain in your face (cheek, jaw, around the eyes, etc) and your doctor and other healthcare professionals unable to explain the causes of the disorder.

Atypical Facial Pain has characteristics of chronic facial pain. Atypical pain is the result of diagnosis when other possibilities and conditions of your facial pain have been measured and eliminated.

Characteristics
Atypical facial pain is characterized by:

  • Chronic and constant pain
  • Has a variable intensity
  • Nonappearance of any obvious cause in the face or the brain
  • The pain is poorly localized
  • The pain is deep
  • Describes as dull and aching
  • The pain does not waken the patient from his/her sleep
  • At onset, the pain might be confined to a limited area
  • After a period of time, the pain might spread to a larger area

Epidemiology
The epidemiologies of facial pain are as follows:

  • Atypical facial pain patients are more common in women than those of men.
  • Most Atypical Facial Pain patients who attend facial pain clinics are women with ages range from 30 to 50 years old.
  • The most affected area in common is the maxillary region.
  • Even if the maxillary region is the most commonly affected, any area of the face still can be affected.
  • There is no disease or other causes found in the majority of Atypical Facial Pain patients.
  • The symptoms characterize serious disease in a small number of the patients.
  • In a few patients, the pain may be one implication from psychiatric or psychological disease.

Diagnosis
Genetic factors may be involved in the presence of Atypical Facial Pain. This possibility is taken since in some patients, they have nerves which are vulnerable to damage from minor triggers which would not make chronic pain in a “normal” Atypical Facial Pain patients.

Until now, there are no specific checks and tests which can confirm the diagnosis of this pain.

A lot of possible causes of pain which can lead into wrong diagnosis, such as:

  • Undetected cancerous lesions
  • Muscle-based pain
  • Infections of the sinuses
  • Infections of the teeth

Therefore, to eliminate other possible causes of pain, a detailed and systematic clinical assessment must be conducted by an experienced clinician.

Usually, neurological assessment of the head and neck will be conducted. Imaging studies of the face and brain or ENT assessment might be needed in small number of patients.

The next article about Atypical Facial Pain will inform about the treatment, prevention and other related topics.

You should remember to consult with your doctor, clinicians and other healthcare professionals to get a better knowledge and information about Atypical Facial Pain.

This article is not intended to be the only source of information about facial pain.

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