Body pain maps improve the report of painful complaints in patients with orofacial pain

Ana Lúcia Franco Gabriel Henrique Farto Runho José Tadeu Tesseroli de Siqueira Cinara Maria Camparis About the authors

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Assessing patients´ pain complaints is essential for determining adequate diagnosis and therapeutic interventions in orofacial pain (OFP). Thus, the aim of this study was to verify the frequency of reported pain complaints compared to those marked on patients´ body pain maps. METHOD: Data was collected from the Orofacial Pain Clinic archives (532 patients) of Araraquara Dental School. All individuals answered a standardized clinical questionnaire to report their chief complaints and completed a body map indicating their pain areas. The frequency of reported pain complaints was compared to the frequency of painful sites identified on body maps. Nine anatomic regions were considered: head, face, neck, shoulders, arms, chest, abdomen, back, and legs. In addition, sensitivity, specificity and kappa values were calculated comparing the pain reports to body pain drawings, the latter being considered as gold standard. RESULTS: The mean age of total sample was 33.5 ± 13.8 years, 33.9 ± 13.9 years for women and 31.7 ± 13.1 years for men. Higher prevalence of pain was observed among female patients. Overall, the regions of greater pain reports were located in the upper body areas, both for women and men. A significant difference between the pain reports and the pain drawings was observed for the body regions below the neck, in both genders. The body pain maps demonstrated superiority against pain reports in assessing patients´ painful complaints during the anamnesis. CONCLUSION: Pain reports were not an efficient method for diagnosing all patient´s painful complaints, because body pain maps evidentiated additional pain complaints in OFP patients.

Drawings; Facial pain; Pain; Self-report; Temporomandibular joint


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