Cervicogenic Model

This excellent article  by one of our members provides an alternative look at TN and its treatment. It is well documented, fully footnoted and has an excellent bibliography (for further study) It raises some excellent questions for all of us. The full title is:

To MVD or not to MVD? Trigeminal Neuralgia – A cervicogenic model.

Authors Note

The  classification  of  head  and  facial  pain  is  constantly  evolving  and  by  its nature  incomplete, with various bodies from institutions, to the IASP to the IHS playing their part.

Whilst  a  classification  system  is  useful  in  facilitating,  communication  between
doctor/doctor/patient,  diagnosis,  treatment  and  treatment  outcomes,  it  can  also  be detrimental.  Many  patients’  symptoms  don't  fit  a  particular  box  yet  this  is  where  they  are placed, boxed in, and consequently on a treatment protocol that fits that box.

For  example,  in  a  rigid  box  system  of  classification,  the  migraine  patient  who  goes  on  to develop  Trigeminal  like  pain  finds  themselves  in  two  boxes  with  two  different  treatment protocols and as such  the  possibility  that the  two  have  a single cause is often ignored to  the detriment of  the  patient and future research into  the  patient's condition.

I use  migraine  as  a possible  example  but  the  same  could  be  said  of  various  head  and  face  pain  conditions;  TMJ, occipital neuralgia, atypical odontalgia, Type2 TN,GN, GPN to name but a few.

Head and facial pain  disorders  as  such  are  not  immune  to  junk  diagnoses  due  to  presenting  and  often overlapping symptoms. Put  simply  Trigeminal  Neuralgia  means  pain  in  the  distribution  of  the  nerve  with  no  more
meaning than the term sciatica, it is not a diagnosis but a description of symptoms which is why the pathogenesis (be it microvascular compression or other) of TN remains a hypothesis, and is open to debate. A diagnosis of Trigeminal Neuralgia may as well mean Tough Nut to crack. For the purpose of this article therefore TN can be read as “TN like” pain.

The entire article can be found in this PDFTN7.pdf

Cervicogenic model/ TN caused by the neck TN7.pdf can be found at


This article, mentioned above can be used in part or in it’s entirety by anyone, or any organization.

The links in this seem to die, so posting a new link to article

in the hope it might be of use to some