Neurobiology of estrogen status in deep craniofacial pain

David A. Bereiter, Keiichiro Okamoto

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

31 Scopus citations


Pain in the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) region often occurs with no overt signs of injury or inflammation. Although the etiology of TMJ-related pain may involve multiple factors, one likely risk factor is female gender or estrogen status. Evidence is reviewed from human and animal studies, supporting the proposition that estrogen status acts peripherally or centrally to influence TMJ nociceptive processing. A new model termed the "TMJ pain matrix" is proposed as critical for the initial integration of TMJ-related sensory signals in the lower brainstem that is both modified by estrogen status, and closely linked to endogenous pain and autonomic control pathways.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationInternational Review of Neurobiology
PublisherAcademic Press Inc.
Number of pages34
StatePublished - 2011

Publication series

NameInternational Review of Neurobiology
ISSN (Print)0074-7742
ISSN (Electronic)0074-7742

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors were supported by a grant from the National Institutes of Health (DE12758) and the Office of Research on Womens Health. The authors thank Dr. Z. Chang for assistance in preparation of the manuscript.


  • Craniofacial
  • Estrogen
  • Neurobiology
  • Pain control
  • Peripheral
  • Temporomandibular


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