Sphenopalatine Ganglion Stimulation: 50 Years of Safety and Efficacy

The concept of doing Sphenopalatine Ganglion Blocks is over 100 years old and was first described by Sluder in 1908 for Sluder’s Neuralgia.  Current thinking is what Sluder described was Cluster Headache, Autonomic Cephalgias or Temporomandibular disorders including trigeminal neuralgia.

There is a long history of safety with these blocks and many means of delivering them. Dentists and ENT’s are usually considered the experts in the neuroanatomy of the trigeminal nerve but in more recent times neurologists and interventional radiologists have joined the field.

The book “Miracles On Park Avenue”documented the incredible practice of Dr Milton Reder an New York ENT who saw patients from around the world.

Dentists and ENT’s routinely utilize blocks to the trigeminal nerves and the Sphenopalatine Ganglion is located on the maxillary branch of the trigeminal in the Pterygopalatine fossa.  The Sphenoplatine Ganglion is also known as the Pterygopalatine Ganglion from its position in the fossa and also as the Nasal Ganglion.

Dr Barney Jankelson, the Father of Neuromuscular Dentistry was a pioneer in modern neurostimulation.  To help his wife with her Multiple Sclerosis he developed the Myomonitor an Ultra-low Frequency Transcutaneous Neuro=Stimulator (ULF-TENS).  He  called it  the Myomonitor because it is used to stimulate the facial and trigeminal nerve in a physiologic way to relax all of the muscles fed by those nerves.

The incredible beauty of the trigeminal nervous system enabled Dr Jankelson to not just effect the Somato-Sensory Nervous System but to also effectively reset the Autonomic nervous System.  The position of the Sphenopalatine Ganglion on the Maxillary Branch of the Trigeminal nerve gave him access to the largest Parasympathetic Ganglion of the head.  In addition Sympathetic fibers from the Superior Cervical Ganglion pass thru the SPG and travel with the Somatosensory nerves in all of the branches of the trigeminal nerve.

The ULF-TENS (.66hz) of the Myomonitor is perfect for stimulation of the Sphenopalatine Ganglion in ii’s position inside the bony Perygopalatine fossa.  Dr Jankelson stumbled upon hidden entrance into the Limbic System of the brain and the H-P-A Axis. The Reticular Activation System amplifies this input to the brain.   The Hypothalamus-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis has been identified as a major component of TMJ and Chronic Pain Disorders and Stimulation of The Sphenopalatine Ganglion addresses it.    New research on Sphenopalatine Stimulation is looking at low frequency stimulation.

Dr Jankelson’s Myomonitor already has a 50 year exceptional record for safety and efficacy!  It may turn out to be extremely helpful for Mustiple Sclerosis and other neurologic disorders.  The BNS-40 is a personal home use ULF-TENS to relax facial and stomatognathic muscles and to non-invasively stimulate the SphenoPalatine Ganglion.

Neuromuscular Dentistry is the perfect fusion of Dentistry, orthopedics and neurology which explains it’s effectiveness.

The two links that follow are of testimonials of patients who have had Neuromuscular Treatment and /or SPG Blocks.



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