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Orofacial Pain: Introduction, History and Examination

presented by Anne Harrison, PT, PhD

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Satisfactory completion requirements: All disciplines must complete learning assessments to be awarded credit, no minimum score required unless otherwise specified within the course.

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This course is part of our OCS Prep-Program. Learn more about the full prep-program here: MedBridge OCS Prep-Program.

Is diagnostic classification of patients with orofacial pain outside of your skill set? Physical therapists (PTs) have a central role in the interprofessional team providing care for people with temporomandibular disorders (TMD) and other orofacial pain. Diagnostic classification is challenging given the complexities inherent in this patient population, yet such classification is essential in targeting appropriate interventions. In this course the physical therapist instructor will provide an overview of the examination approach that will lead to a diagnostic classification that targets optimal management approaches for patients with orofacial pain.

Meet Your Instructor

Anne Harrison, PT, PhD

Dr. Harrison is an Associate Professor and Director of Professional Studies of Physical Therapy in the Rehabilitation Sciences PhD Program at the University of Kentucky. Her research focuses on aging, balance, and postural stability and interdisciplinary aspects of functional health in older adults. She also focuses on educational strategies and outcomes in geriatrics and multimedia…

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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1. Orofacial Pain and Functional Anatomy of the Temporomandibular System

This chapter will provide an overview of the functional anatomy of the masticatory system and define generally the central and peripheral processes of pain as they apply to orofacial pain. The student will begin to understand that orofacial pain is an integration of messages from both the peripheral and central nervous system. You will also become familiar with basic functional anatomy of the masticatory system.

2. Diagnostic Classifications

Dr. Harrison will provide a brief overview of the Diagnostic Classification of Temporomandibular Disorders (DC/TMD) developed by the American Academy of Orofacial Pain (AAOP).

3. Physical Therapy Examination

We'll take an in-depth look at a detailed description of the physical therapy examination focusing on history taking and physical examination for people with orofacial pain. This chapter will give you a better understanding of key elements in regards to a patient's history with orofacial pain.

4. Case Study: Ms. Chavez

In the final chapter, we will apply the history and physical examination to an actual patient. Each of you will learn how to apply proper elements of history taking and physical examination to an actual patient case, and determine if red flags exist and consider synthesis of the examination data for patient evaluation.

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