Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, (CRPS) and The Dental Patient



Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, (CRPS) is a horrible disease entity that can affect any part of the body and any organ of the body. It is essentially a disease of the sympathetic component of the central nervous system. This disease is well documented in the medical literature dating back over one hundred and fifty years.

CRPS is a clinical diagnosis based on a proper history and exam. In 2013, a formal criteria for the diagnosis of CRPS was published in the medical literature.

CRPS to the head, neck, face and mouth is also well documented in the literature. There are definitive signs and symptoms that all dentists should be aware of.

Specifically, when this disease invades the head, neck, face and mouth, dentists will often encounter patients with complaints of: they cannot get numb, their bite never feels right, muscle dysfunction that does not respond to conventional treatments, new or reoccurring pain after dental procedures, pain that spreads beyond the mouth, swelling and inflammation with no sign of infection, and extreme cold sensitivity of the teeth as but a few examples.

Early diagnosis and treatment of this disease is critical to minimize the presenting symptoms and to prevent their spread to other parts of the body. There is no cure for CRPS.

The Dentist can play a crucial role in the early diagnosis and treatment of this debilitating disease.

Upon completion of this presentation, attendees will have the skills necessary to:

  • Understand the function of the sympathetic nervous system
  • Take a proper health history as relates to CRPS
  • Recognize the sympathetic nervous system disorder, CRPS
  • Recognize CRPS to the head, face and mouth
  • Learn how to explain this disorder to patients
  • Learn treatment options for CRPS
  • Learn and be introduced to how to do chair side sympathetic nerve blocks

This seminar can be presented in a one hour, half day or full day format with content adjusted accordingly.

For Medical, Dental and Legal Professionals

Dr. Gittelson is available to give presentations to both small group and large audiences on TMJ, CRPS, facial pain and implant related topics. These presentations can range in time from one hour to half day to full day format.

Dr. Gittelson is also available for consultation, professional opinion and expert review and testimony regarding TMJ, CRPS, facial pain and implant related issues.