We encountered three patients with trigeminal neuralgia-like paroxysmal pain in the buccal nerve region. In all cases, paroxysmal pain was felt spreading to the receptive field of the ipsilateral buccal nerve, and clear tenderness was observed during intraoral palpation at the inner side of the mandibular ramus where the temporalis muscle runs and attaches. It was assumed that the paroxysmal pain might be caused by nerve compression related to temporalis muscle hyperactivity. To lend support to this hypothesis, we also studied the anatomical relationship between the buccal nerve and the masticatory muscles. In this autopsy study, the buccal nerve pierced the temporalis muscle in six (12%) of 52 specimens from 26 cadavers. These findings support the hypothesis that peripheral buccal nerve compression could be an etiology of paroxysmal neuropathic pain in the unilateral orofacial region.
ASJC Scopus subject areas