Peripheral painful traumatic trigeminal neuropathy: Clinical features in 91 cases and proposal of novel diagnostic criteria

Rafael Benoliel*, Yehuda Zadik, Eli Eliav, Yair Sharav

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

102 Scopus citations


Aims: To field-test carefully designed criteria for pain following trigeminal nerve trauma. Methods: In order to characterize the clinical phenotype, posttraumatic pain patients were studied and compared with classical trigeminal neuralgia patients (CTN, defined according to the International Headache Society's criteria). Based on etiology and features, trigeminal pain following trauma was defined as "peripheral painful traumatic trigeminal neuropathy" (PPTTN). Data were analyzed with t tests, ANOVA, chi-square, and regression analyses. Results: A total of 145 patients were included: 91 with PPTTN and 54 with CTN. Findings indicated that PPTTN criteria are clinically applicable in the detection and characterization of relevant cases. In contrast to accepted characteristics for PPTTN, the observed profile included both continuous and paroxysmal pain that was stabbing and/or burning. The quality, duration, and intensity were significantly different from the CTN patients (P < .05). PPTTN was consistently accompanied by trigeminal sensory abnormalities (96%) that were mostly allodynia, hyperor hypoalgesia, and only 1% of the PPTTN cases had anesthesia. Conclusion: Overall, the proposed PPTTN criteria have proven to be clinically useful. In view of these results, modified PPTTN diagnostic criteria are proposed for use in future research.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)49-58
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Oral and Facial Pain and Headache
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
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  • Atypical odontalgia
  • Neuropathic pain
  • Persistent idiopathic facial pain
  • Trigeminal neuralgia


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