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Medical tongue piercing - development and evaluation of a surgical protocol and the perception of procedural discomfort of the participants.

Bentsen B, Gaihede M, Lontis R, Andreasen Struijk LN - J Neuroeng Rehabil (2014)

Bottom Line: The piercings were all successfully inserted in less than 5 min and the pain level was moderate compared with oral injections.The procedure proved simple, fast, and safe for insertion of tongue piercings for tetraplegic subjects in a clinical setting.No serious complications were encountered, and the procedure was found tolerable to the participants.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Center for Sensory Motor Interaction, Department of Health Science and Technology, Faculty of Medicine, Aalborg University, DK-9220 Aalborg, Denmark. lontis@hst.aau.dk.

ABSTRACT

Background: A system providing disabled persons with control of various assistive devices with the tongue has been developed at Aalborg University in Denmark. The system requires an activation unit attached to the tongue with a small piercing. The aim of this study was to establish and evaluate a safe and tolerable procedure for medical tongue piercing and to evaluate the expected and perceived procedural discomfort.

Methods: Four tetraplegic subjects volunteered for the study. A surgical protocol for a safe insertion of a tongue barbell piercing was presented using sterilized instruments and piercing parts. Moreover, post-procedural observations of participant complications such as bleeding, edema, and infection were recorded. Finally, procedural discomforts were monitored by VAS scores of pain, changes in taste and speech as well as problems related to hitting the teeth.

Results: The piercings were all successfully inserted in less than 5 min and the pain level was moderate compared with oral injections. No bleeding, infection, embedding of the piercing, or tooth/gingival injuries were encountered; a moderate edema was found in one case without affecting the speech. In two cases the piercing rod later had to be replaced by a shorter rod, because participants complained that the rod hit their teeth. The replacements prevented further problems. Moreover, loosening of balls was encountered, which could be prevented with the addition of dental glue. No cases of swallowing or aspiration of the piercing parts were recorded.

Conclusions: The procedure proved simple, fast, and safe for insertion of tongue piercings for tetraplegic subjects in a clinical setting. The procedure represented several precautions in order to avoid risks in these susceptible participants with possible co-morbidity. No serious complications were encountered, and the procedure was found tolerable to the participants. The procedure may be used in future studies with tongue piercings being a prerequisite for similar systems, and this may include insertion in an out-patient setting.

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The mean perceived pain from tongue piercings in the current study compared with various other known oral pain stimuli.
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Figure 10: The mean perceived pain from tongue piercings in the current study compared with various other known oral pain stimuli.

Mentions: No results regarding the use of local anesthesia were available and, therefore, the question of its effects as well as the procedural pain perceived during the insertion of the piercing was not addressed. It may be relevant that participants are given the option of an injection of local anesthesia because pain and anxiety control has previously been argued for in piercing situations where the participants have, for instance, heart conditions[20]. However, the mean procedural pain in this study was comparable with injections[27], ultrasonic cleaning of teeth[28], orthodontic separation of teeth[29], and preparation for small dental cavities[30], whereas it is far below the pain perceived after removal of a third molar[31]. For comparison, these situations are illustrated in Figure 10. Thus, based on these findings it can be documented that the piercing procedure described here caused pain in line with standard orthodontic procedures and injections. Therefore, it may be recommended to future participants that local anesthesia is not needed because its usage will not counterbalance its advantages. Moreover, future participants can be informed that any pain or discomforts will disappear more or less in four to six days, which has also been reported by another study[32]. The analgesics prescribed included only the first 24-hour period, and no additional prescriptions were requested. Thus the pain had significantly decreased and become tolerable during this period.


Medical tongue piercing - development and evaluation of a surgical protocol and the perception of procedural discomfort of the participants.

Bentsen B, Gaihede M, Lontis R, Andreasen Struijk LN - J Neuroeng Rehabil (2014)

The mean perceived pain from tongue piercings in the current study compared with various other known oral pain stimuli.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4230317&req=5

Figure 10: The mean perceived pain from tongue piercings in the current study compared with various other known oral pain stimuli.
Mentions: No results regarding the use of local anesthesia were available and, therefore, the question of its effects as well as the procedural pain perceived during the insertion of the piercing was not addressed. It may be relevant that participants are given the option of an injection of local anesthesia because pain and anxiety control has previously been argued for in piercing situations where the participants have, for instance, heart conditions[20]. However, the mean procedural pain in this study was comparable with injections[27], ultrasonic cleaning of teeth[28], orthodontic separation of teeth[29], and preparation for small dental cavities[30], whereas it is far below the pain perceived after removal of a third molar[31]. For comparison, these situations are illustrated in Figure 10. Thus, based on these findings it can be documented that the piercing procedure described here caused pain in line with standard orthodontic procedures and injections. Therefore, it may be recommended to future participants that local anesthesia is not needed because its usage will not counterbalance its advantages. Moreover, future participants can be informed that any pain or discomforts will disappear more or less in four to six days, which has also been reported by another study[32]. The analgesics prescribed included only the first 24-hour period, and no additional prescriptions were requested. Thus the pain had significantly decreased and become tolerable during this period.

Bottom Line: The piercings were all successfully inserted in less than 5 min and the pain level was moderate compared with oral injections.The procedure proved simple, fast, and safe for insertion of tongue piercings for tetraplegic subjects in a clinical setting.No serious complications were encountered, and the procedure was found tolerable to the participants.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Center for Sensory Motor Interaction, Department of Health Science and Technology, Faculty of Medicine, Aalborg University, DK-9220 Aalborg, Denmark. lontis@hst.aau.dk.

ABSTRACT

Background: A system providing disabled persons with control of various assistive devices with the tongue has been developed at Aalborg University in Denmark. The system requires an activation unit attached to the tongue with a small piercing. The aim of this study was to establish and evaluate a safe and tolerable procedure for medical tongue piercing and to evaluate the expected and perceived procedural discomfort.

Methods: Four tetraplegic subjects volunteered for the study. A surgical protocol for a safe insertion of a tongue barbell piercing was presented using sterilized instruments and piercing parts. Moreover, post-procedural observations of participant complications such as bleeding, edema, and infection were recorded. Finally, procedural discomforts were monitored by VAS scores of pain, changes in taste and speech as well as problems related to hitting the teeth.

Results: The piercings were all successfully inserted in less than 5 min and the pain level was moderate compared with oral injections. No bleeding, infection, embedding of the piercing, or tooth/gingival injuries were encountered; a moderate edema was found in one case without affecting the speech. In two cases the piercing rod later had to be replaced by a shorter rod, because participants complained that the rod hit their teeth. The replacements prevented further problems. Moreover, loosening of balls was encountered, which could be prevented with the addition of dental glue. No cases of swallowing or aspiration of the piercing parts were recorded.

Conclusions: The procedure proved simple, fast, and safe for insertion of tongue piercings for tetraplegic subjects in a clinical setting. The procedure represented several precautions in order to avoid risks in these susceptible participants with possible co-morbidity. No serious complications were encountered, and the procedure was found tolerable to the participants. The procedure may be used in future studies with tongue piercings being a prerequisite for similar systems, and this may include insertion in an out-patient setting.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus