Orofacial pain beyond temporomandibular disorders
published in July - December 2022 - in Il Fisioterapista - issue n.2
Cecilia Bagnoli

Knowing how to perform an adequate screening for referral process is now a fundamental requirement for the physiotherapist working in direct access. In the context of cranio-orofacial pain in particular, the situations in which one might find oneself are many, and therefore the clinical presentations are extremely variable. It is clear that the physiotherapist’s task is not to make a diagnosis, but to be able to recognize the red flags which could suggest that the patient in front of us goes beyond our competence. Therefore, it will be crucial to carry out an accurate assessment, including complete anamnesis and physical examination. This will allow us to identify the red flags concerning disorders involving teeth and their associated structures, cranial nerves lesions or pathologies, temporal arteritis, otorhinolaryngology disorders, visceral conditions, tumors and others. In this way it will be possible to point to the patient the most suitable practitioner who can take care of him or her.