[Therapy for atypical facial pain].Nihon Rinsho. 2009 Sep; 67(9):1803-9.NR
Atypical facial pain is a pain in the head, neck and the face, without organic causes. It is treated at departments of physical medicine, such as dental, oral and maxillofacial surgery, otolaryngology, cerebral surgery, or head and neck surgery. In primary care, it is considered to be a medically unexplained symptom (MUS), or a somatoform disorder, such as somatization caused by a functional somatic syndrome (FSS) by psychiatrists. Usually, patients consult departments of physical medicine complaining of physical pain. Therefore physicians in these departments should examine the patients from the holistic perspective, and identify organic diseases. As atypical facial pain becomes chronic, other complications, including psychiatric complaints other than physical pain, such as depression may develop. Moreover, physical, psychological, and social factors affect the symptoms by interacting with one another. Therefore, in examining atypical facial pain, doctors specializing in dental, oral and maxillofacial medicine are required to provide psychosomatic treatment that is based on integrated knowledge.