Pathophysiology of Head and Facial Pain

  • Matthew Helton
  • Erika A. PetersenEmail author


A variety of insults and mechanisms cause head and facial pain. Nociceptive pathways carrying the unpleasant physical and emotional perception of pain excite based on actual or impending tissue damage. Facial pain in particular possesses a large differential diagnosis that can be narrowed with historical facts pertinent to the patient. An understanding of the pathophysiology of facial pain will help the practitioner to the correct diagnosis and treatment for the patient. Causes of facial pain include acute insult, neurogenic, inflammatory, post-traumatic, and idiopathic.


Pathophysiology Innervation of the head Facial pain Nociceptive pain Neuropathic pain Sensitization 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of NeurosurgeryUniversity of Arkansas for Medical SciencesLittle RockUSA

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