School of Dental Sciences

Staff Profile

Professor Justin Durham

Head, School of Dental Sciences. Professor of Orofacial Pain & Hon. Consultant Oral Surgeon.



Oral Surgeon

Qualifications (in reverse chronological order):

  • Postgraduate Cert. Pain Management, Edinburgh University.
  • Postgraduate Cert. Health Economics, Aberdeen University.
  • Diplomate of American Board of Orofacial Pain. USA Board examination for orofacial pain practice.
  • Intercollegiate Fellowship in Dental Surgery RCS Edinburgh. FDS (OS) RCS.
  • Doctor of Philosophy, Newcastle University - Ideologies and outcomes in Temporomandibular Disorders
  • Postgraduate Cert. Academic Practice, Newcastle University with Distinction
  • Membership of Faculty of Dental Surgery, Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) of Edinburgh. MFDS RCS(Ed)
  • Bachelor of Dental Surgery, Newcastle University. Distinction Paedodontics


  • International Association of Dental Research
  • International RDC/TMD Consortium Network
  • Association of British Academic Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
  • Fellow of Higher Education Academy
  • British Pain Society
  • European Academy of Craniomandibular Disorders elected member

Honours and Awards

See research

Roles and Responsibilities

  • Deputy Dean of Clinical Medicine (2017-19)
  • Faculty of Medical Sciences' Director of Externally Funded Clinical Fellowships (2015-19)
  • Undergraduate clinical teaching lead for Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery (2014-19)
  • Finals examination committee and standard setting for all OMFSci finals questions – 2007 onwards
  • Training programme Director for Health Education North-East's Specialist training programme in Oral Surgery (2014 onwards)
  • Member of British Pain Society's working groups on: Undergraduate Health Professional Pain Curriculum (2011-16); Epidemiology and clinical coding of chronic pain (2013 onwards).
  • Chair of SAC working group for work based assessments for oral surgery core competency specialist training – 2010-12
  • Secretary of the UK specialist interest group in Orofacial pain and Temporomandibular Disorders 2009 onwards
  • Clinical introductory course lead 2009-14
  • Chair of working party for Undergraduate Education (Association of British Academic Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons) 2007-13
  • Electives Director 2007-09
  • Member of working party for Undergraduate Education (Association of British Academic Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons) 2005-07

Google scholar: Click here.

SCOPUS: Click here.


Google scholar: Click here.

SCOPUS: Click here.

Research Interests 

Temporomandibular Disorders (TMDs) and persistent (chronic) orofacial pain 

Quality of life 

Professional and Patients' experiences or perceptions of care 

Current Work 

My current research programme addresses both translational gaps and consists of two broad work streams:

1) Acute inflammatory dental pain: enabling care and reducing chronification:

This work stream seeks to: i) ascertain the reasons behind delayed attendance for acute inflammatory dental pain and intervene in order to enable and facilitate patients into earlier and definitive care thereby reducing the size of the cohort experiencing acute dental pain (for a prolonged duration) and thereby reducing the risk of chronification to “phantom tooth pain” (Atypical Odontalgia, Persistant Dentoalveolar Pain [PDAP]); ii) unpick the mechanisms behind the transition from acute dental to chronic "phantom" pain in order to be able to understand the therapeutic targets available at the time of treatment so we can develop more effective treatments to prevent the transition.

Collaborators in this work stream include individuals from: Newcastle's Institutes of Cellular Medicine and Neuroscience, University of Washington, and the Orofacial Pain research team at Minnesota University

2) Persistent orofacial pain care pathways and management

This varied work stream builds on the data generated from the NIHR funded DEEP study ( on care pathways in persistent orofacial pain and seeks to address many of the initial problems patients and health care professionals face at the first point of contact with healthcare:

- Diagnosis of Temporomandibular Disorders (TMD) and PDAP

- Stratification of care in persistent orofacial pain

- Gold standard self-management of TMD?

- Diet and nutrition in TMD

- Cognition's role in TMD pain

- Topical neuromodulation of persistent neuropathic orofacial pain for example some types of PDAP.

Collaborators in this work stream include individuals from: Newcastle's Institute of Neuroscience, King's College, University of Sheffield, University of Zurich, University of Ghent, Minnesota University.

Research Roles and Postgraduate Supervision: 

Previous supervisor of seven successful MSc theses, one succesful MPhil thesis and three successful PhD theses:  

  • MSc on Qualitative exploration of impact of periodontal disease on patients' daily lives 
  • MSc on Validating short form of Research Diagnostic Criteria for TMD 
  • MSc on Factors affecting provision of orthodontic treatment by Primary care 
  • MSc on Investigation of QOL in patients with periodontal disease 
  • MSc on Defining normality in orthodontics: the patients’ perception
  • MSc on Patient based outcome measure in TMD
  • MSc on Does the method of delivery of OHIP-49 affect the outcome score?
  • MPhil on Process of choice in Prosthodontic care in UK and Germany 
  • PhD on Outcomes and impacts of blow-out fractures of the orbit (2nd supervisor)
  • PhD on Evidence-based management and clinical decision-making in TMJ Disc Displacement without reduction (Primary supervisor)
  • PhD on Effects of topical neuromodulatory medications on orofacial tissue in vitro (Primary supervisor)
Currently supervising 2 PhD students. External examiner for two international universities for Masters' related to orofacial pain and also for a UK university at PhD level.

Esteem Indicators 

2016 President-Elect of RDC/TMD consortium - a network of IADR.

2016 Awarded King James IV Professorship by Royal College of Surgeons' of Edinburgh

2012-2017 NIHR Clinician Scientist

International Prizes: 

2010 - Educational Research Group Faculty Award. IADR, Barcelona, Spain.

Awarded by International Association of Dental Research  Educational Research Group 

2008  Outstanding Post-doctoral abstract award. IADR, Toronto, Canada.

Awarded by International Association of Dental Research  Behavioral, Epidemiology and Health Services Research Group 

Local awards:

2009 - Inaugural Vice-Chancellor's award for excellence in teaching and learning

Awarded by Newcastle University 

Personal fellowships: 

I held a prestigious NIHR Clinician Scientist award from 2012 to 2017 which funded the DEEP study - Developing Effective and Efficient care pathways in persistent orofacial Pain. This longitudinal cohort and cost analysis study has begun to produce data on the direct and indirect costs of the care pathways for persistent orofacial pain establishing their magnitude and using them as a proxy in order to predict treatment need and thereby provided stratified care.

In 2010 to be awarded the prestigious Lasby Fellowship from the University of Minnesota. This was awarded to allow me to perform collaborative research on Atypical Odontalgia (Persistent Dentoalveolar Pain disorder [PDAP]) in order to develop a screening instrument for this difficult to diagnose and rare condition using a well described cohort of patients at the University's orofacial pain clinic. 

Invited contributions to books: 

  • the Oral cavity anatomy chapter of the 40th edition of Gray's anatomy 
  • the Oral and maxillofacial surgery definitions of Harty's Dental Dictionary 
  • module on Pain pathways for the e-den project 
  • the chapter on Temporomandibular disorders and chronic orofacial pain in Principles of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery 
  • the chapter on Preparing the mouth for prostheses in Principles of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery 
  • the chapter on Acute manifestations of non-odontogenic pain in The Dental Emergency clinic 
  • the chapter on Temporomandibular disorders in the BDJ Book on Oral surgery 
  • the chapter on Oral and Maxillofacial Trauma in the BDJ Book on Oral surgery 
  • the chapter on Antral Surgery in the BDJ Book on Oral surgery 
  • the chapter on Self-report assessment in IASP book on Orofacial Pain
  • the chapter on Biopsychosocial aspects of orofacial pain in Springer book on Contemporary Oral Medicine

Funding (includes PI, CoI, and postgraduate student funding): 

  • NIHR Clinician Scientist
  • European Society of Endodontology
  • Royal College of Physicians & Surgeons of Glasgow
  • Joint Research Executive Scientific Committee of Royal Victoria Infirmary Trust 
  • Higher Education Academy UK 
  • Newcastle University Teaching and Learning Committee (Research innovations) 
  • Forschungsverbund Community Medicine University of Greifswald 
  • Faculty Teaching and Learning Committee, Newcastle University 
  • Lasby Fellowship, University of Minnesota 
  • American Academy of Orofacial Pain 



Undergraduate Teaching

The areas of the dental undergraduate course that I provide, or have provided, teaching input to, are:

Stage 1
- Head and Neck Anatomy course – previously demonstrating and lecturing
- Introduction to Dentistry course – practical teaching in suturing demonstration

Stage 3
- Course lead for Clinical Introductory Course 2009-2014
- Oral surgery block clinical allocation
- Dentistry, the Dentist and Public Health lecture series
- Stage 3 OSCE examiner
- Stage 3 In-course examiner
- Stage 3 Human diseases examiner

Stage 4
- Stage 4 TMDs and Differential Diagnosis of Orofacial Pain lecture series
- Stage 4 Oral diseases lecture series
- Stage 4 Human diseases OSCE examiner
- Stage 4 Human diseases In-course examiner
- Oral surgery block clinical allocation - Minor oral surgery teaching

Stage 5
- Oral diseases lecture series
- Finals examination lead for Oral and Maxillofacial Sciences 
- Pre-finals seminar program in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

I am also the clinical teaching lead for the Undergraduate clinical course in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery.

Postgraduate Teaching

- Course tutor on Newcastle University’s postgraduate diploma in clinical implant dentistry

- Examiner for Intercollegiate Fellowship in Oral Surgery (FDS[OS])

- MFDS examiner for RCS (Edin)

- Previous examiner for Intercollegiate Membership in Oral Surgery