Background and objectives: Superficial cervical muscles (sternocleoidomastoid and anterior scalene) have the greater electromyography (EMG) activity in myogenous and mixed temporomandibular disorders (TMD) than healthy, demonstrating an abnormal pattern of contraction. A strong relationship has been shown between the jaw and neck disability due to TMD. The aim of this study was to demonstrate the efficacy of superficial cervical block (SCPB), on pain control in TMD patients with neck pain, headache and on arthrocentesis procedure.
Methods: Sixteen patients with neck pain and headache associated with TMJ internal derangement treated by arthrocentesis were included. SCPB performed before arthrocentesis with a mixture of local anaesthetic and sterile saline solution. Pain and dysfunction were evaluated by visual analogue scale. The hemodynamic and peripheral thermoregulation values in all procedures were recorded before, during and after arthrocentesis.
Results: All patients experienced a significant ( p < 0.01) increase in maximal mouth opening immediately post-arthrocentesis. The pre and postoperative visual analogue scale (VAS) values ranged from 0 to 8 (mean 2 ± 2.77) and 0 to 3 (mean 0.32 ± 0.95), respectively. There was a significant decrease in pain and dysfunction after SCPB and arthrocentesis ( p < 0.01). The mean hemodynamic values were significantly decreased ( p < 0.05) while peripheral thermoregulation values were significantly increased after SCPB ( p < 0.01).
Conclusion: Data obtained from this preliminary study showed that SCPB could be useful in order to control pain in patients with neck pain and headache associated with TMD and provides comfort to surgeon for performing arthrocentesis.
Key words: superficial cervical plexus block; neck pain; headache; TMD