Central syntropic effects elicited by trigeminal proprioceptive equilibrium in Alzheimer’s disease: a case report
Department of Oral Science, University ‘G.D’Annunzio’, via dei Vestini, 31, Chieti, 66100, Italy
Journal of Medical Case Reports 2012, 6:161 doi:10.1186/1752-1947-6-161Published: 26 June 2012
The presented patient, affected by Alzheimer’s disease, underwent neuropsychological evaluation and functional magnetic resonance imaging investigation under occlusal proprioceptive un-balance and re-balance conditions. Saccadic and pupillometric video-oculographic examinations were performed in order to detect connected trigeminal proprioceptive motor patterns able to interfere with reticular formation cerebellum functions linked to visual and procedural processes prematurely altered in Alzheimer’s disease.
A 66-year-old Caucasian man, affected by Alzheimer’s disease and with a neuropsychological evaluation issued by the Alzheimer’s Evaluation Unit, underwent an electromyographic investigation of the masseter muscles in order to assess their functional balance. The patient showed a bilateral lack of all inferior molars. The extreme myoelectric asymmetry in dental occlusion suggested the rebalancing of masseter muscular functions through concurrent transcutaneous stimulation of the trigeminal nerve supramandibular and submandibular motor branches. The above-mentioned method allows detection of symmetric craniomandibular muscular relation that can be kept constant through the use of a cusp bite modeled on the inferior dental arch, called orthotic-syntropic bite. A few days later, the patient underwent a new neuropsychological investigation, together with a functional magnetic resonance imaging study, and saccadic, pupillometric video-oculographic examinations in occlusal un-balance and re-balance conditions.
Comparative data analysis has shown that a re-balanced occlusal condition can improve a patient’s cognitive-attentive functions. Moreover, the saccadic and pupillometric video-oculographic investigations have proven useful both in analyzing reticulo-cerebellar subcortical systems, prematurely altered in Alzheimer’s disease, and in implementing neurological evaluations.