Orofacial neuropathic pain: a pharmacological approach
Orofacial neuropathic pain is a medical condition that arises due to somatosensory nervous system injury or disease in the orofacial region. Multiple types of orofacial neuropathic pain have been identified, such as nonodontogenic neuropathic orofacial pain, trigeminal neuralgia, postherpetic neuralgia, atypical odontalgia and glossopharyngeal neuralgia. To date, pharmacological intervention is considered the cornerstone in the management of neuropathic pain. Drugs from different classes including anticonvulsants, antidepressants, opioids, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and others are commonly used in the treatment of neuropathy. Nevertheless, the majority of these drugs are yet to be approved by the food and drug administration for neuropathy. This review will explore recent clinical findings and pieces of evidence regarding medical agents used in the management of orofacial neuropathic pain and will discuss their efficacy and mode of action, at the same time highlighting a number of promising therapeutic options.