News Archive

TMD:  Ideal for IPE Experiences

´╗┐Interprofessional education (IPE), an initiative for improving the quality of patient care through the collaboration of practitioners in various health care disciplines, has become an integral component of the LSUSD curriculum. One dental field that is ideally suited for integration into an IPE environment is orofacial pain, and more specifically, temporomandibular disorders (TMD).

In one application of IPE for TMD, this fall third-year dental students met with third-year physical therapy students in the LSUHSC School of Allied Health Professions to learn about each other's role in the diagnosis and management of TMD. With the goal of breaking down barriers to the interprofessional treatment of TMD patients, the program was planned and coordinated by physical therapy students. Third-year student Celeste Compton led the planning with the assistance of PT students Nathan Macaluso and Jim Marcantel. The interprofessional event included keynote speakers from dentistry and PT, small group case discussion, and a panel discussion with five TMD experts.

The morning began with keynote presentations on the interprofessional approach to TMD by a part-time faculty member in each discipline. Michael Shannon, DDS, MS, directs the Temporomandibular Disorders Clinic in the LSUSD Department of Prosthodontics and is also in private practice in Baton Rouge. Randy Hernandez, PT, DPT, MTC, FAAOMPT, a physical therapist with a practice in Metairie, specializes in the evaluation and management of TMD. He has lectured to both dental and physical therapy students at LSUHSC. Drs. Shannon and Hernandez explained how they address, evaluate, and treat TMD; they also described their working relationship with the other profession and with professions other than dentistry and PT.

Following the keynote presentations, students divided into small groups to discuss a case with pre-assigned questions as a guide. During the small group sessions, students were asked to compose questions for submission to the panel. Questions could refer to the keynote address, the patient case, interprofessional patient care, or TMD.

In addition to Drs. Shannon and Hernandez, members of the expert panel were Gary Klasser, DMD; Michael Conlin, PT, DPT, CKPT; and Eric Cedor, PT, DPT, ScD, COMT. Dr. Klasser is associate professor of diagnostic sciences at LSUSD and certified in orofacial pain. Dr. Cedor is adjunct professor in the department of physical therapy and works with Dr. Hernandez in private practice. Dr. Conlin owns a private PT practice in Hammond.

The TMD event provided the basis for a grant-funded research project conducted by the PT students. They are currently in the process of compiling and analyzing the data that they collected from the program via "Student Perception of Interprofessional Clinical Education-Revised Version 2" (SPICE-R2) surveys, satisfaction surveys, and student and faculty interviews.

According to Klasser and Gremillion, "Since pain is a complex sensory and emotional experience, especially chronic or recurrent pain, an interprofessional model employing a multidisciplinary assessment and management approach currently exists focusing on physical, psychosocial, and behavioral aspects." With the goal of IPE for TMD becoming a routine component of the dental and PT curricula, more joint interactions between students and faculty of the two disciplines are anticipated in the future.

  1. Klasser GD, Gremillion HA. Past, present, and future of predoctoral dental education in orofacial pain and TMDs: A call for interprofessional education. J Dent Educ 2013 Apr;77(4):395-400.


Michael Shannon, DDS, MS
´╗┐Randy Hernandez, PT, DPT, MTC, FAAOMPT


Gary Klasser, DMD


Eric Cedor, PT, DPT, ScD, COMT
Michael Conlin, PT, DPT, CKPT


LSU Health Sciences Center Homepage
Disclaimer, Privacy Policy
┬ę Copyright 2021. All rights reserved.

Last Update 12/2016