The Physical Therapy Board of Craniofacial and Cervical Therapeutics (PTBCCT) was founded in 1999 by an international group of physical therapists, many of whom are members of the American Academy of Orofacial Pain (AAOP), to provide an ongoing educational venue within the academy and assist the profession in the disbursement of evidenced based practice and research. The PTBCCT functions as an independent 501-C3 non-profit organization offering annual continuing education opportunities and certification examinations to physical therapists that meet specific clinical and educational eligibility requirements. Our ultimate goal is to improve the delivery of patient care in this specialty area by enhancing and promoting the evaluative and therapeutic areas in which an experienced physical therapist can enhance the dental management of the patients that we treat.
The board of directors is composed of physical therapists with advanced education and clinical experience specific to the evaluation and treatment of patients with cervical spine disorders (CSD), cervicogenic headaches (CGH), orofacial pain (OFP) and temporomandibular disorders (TMD) that are commonly intertwined. Many of our board members have faculty appointments in dental and/or physical therapy schools as well as related journal and textbook publications.
The profession of Physical Therapy has matured into specialized fields of practice in a manner similar to that of medicine and dentistry. However, unlike medicine (neurology) and dentistry (orofacial pain & temporomandibular disorders) there is currently a void relative to the area of craniofacial and cervical pain/dysfunction syndromes that is specific to physical therapy. The American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) has previously established and recognized specialty areas of practice and developed associated certification criteria and examinations, none of which encompasses TMD. The number of physical therapists that have obtained specialized training and advanced education in this area represents a very small fraction of the APTA that parallels that of the dental profession and has necessitated the creation of our own organization in a manner similar to that of the American Board of Orofacial Pain (ABOP). The PTBCCT participates in the yearly scientific meeting of the American Academy of Orofacial Pain (AAOP) to provide an ongoing forum by which physical therapists can obtain the education needed to develop competency in this specialized field and be exposed to the cutting edge of scientific and clinical advances.
Mannheimer JS. The Physical Therapy Board of Craniofacial and Cervical Therapeutics. Guest Editorial. J of Craniomandibular Practice. 28(3): 145-147, 2010