In the past, if a doctor could not account for the source of a patient’s pain, treatment was still provided including root canals and/or extractions. If the pain did not resolve even after an extraction, it was assumed the patient was crazy or the pain was not related to the scope of dentistry. The patient was likely then referred to a physician or they just continued to live with their pain. During Dr. Hirschinger’s presentation, you will see a video testimonial of a patient who had multiple root canals when the source of her pain was not the teeth. You will see a video testimonial of a patient with a 15-year history of “TMJ” treatment but the cause of her pain was not the joint, and how her pain resolved with the proper diagnosis and treatment. You will learn about patients that had other unnecessary dental treatment that did not relieve their pain since the pain was not odontogenic. You will learn how muscles can, and do, cause severe pain that can cause patients to be very debilitated since no doctor had properly diagnosed their pain as being caused by muscles. Attending this lecture will likely save you the grief and aggravation of treating those patients who complain about what appears to be “dental” pain but the source of the pain is not related to their teeth or their occlusion.
Upon completion of this presentation, participants should be able to: 1) recognize the muscle referral patterns that can mimic tooth pain; 2) localize pain and be more certain of a diagnosis before irreversible dental treatment is rendered; 3) explain why most TMJ pain is not related to the joint; and 4) describe the rationale behind trigger point injections, and when lidocaine and botulinum toxin type A are and are not indicated.