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ISSN : 1226-7155(Print)
ISSN : 2287-6618(Online)
International Journal of Oral Biology Vol.34 No.3 pp.157-164

Trigeminal Neuralgia like Pain Behavior Following Compression of the Rat Trigeminal Ganglion

Dong-K Ahn, Yang Gwi-Y , Mun Jun-H , Park Yoon-Y
Department of Oral Physiology, School of Dentistry, Kyungpook National University
Department of Physiology, School of Medicine, Catholic University of Daegu


We recently described a novel animal model of trigeminal neuropathic pain following compression of the trigeminal ganglion (Ahn et al., 2009). In our present study, we adapted this model using male Sprague-Dawley rats weighing between 250-260 g and then analyzed the behavioral responses of these animals following modified chronic compression of the trigeminal ganglion. Under anesthesia, the rats were mounted onto a stereotaxic frame and a 4% agar solution (10μL) was injected in each case on the dorsal surface of the trigeminal ganglion to achieve compression without causing injury. In the control group, the rats received a sham operation without agar injection. Air-puff, acetone, and heat tests were performed at 3 days before and at 3, 7, 10, 14, 17, 21, 24, 30, 40, 55, and 70 days after surgery. Compression of the trigeminal ganglion produced nociceptive behavior in the trigeminal territory. Mechanical allodynia was established within 3 days and recovered to preoperative levels at approximately 60 days following compression. Mechanical hyperalgesia was also observed at 7 days after compression and persisted until the postoperative day 40. Cold hypersensitivity was established within 3 days after compression and lasted beyond postoperative day 55. In contrast, compression of the trigeminal ganglion did not produce any significant thermal hypersensitivity when compared with the sham operated group. These findings suggest that compression of the trigeminal ganglion without any injury produces prolonged nociceptive behavior and that our rat model is a useful system for further analysis of trigeminal neuralgia.