About Orofacial Therapeutics

Orofacial Therapeutics team members

Overview

Orofacial Therapeutics, Inc is a San Diego-based medical device company that develops a variety of aids for dental and medical providers and patients.

We are a collaborative team open to pursuing partnerships with both private and non-profit organizations working towards patient-centered care for pain conditions.

Ann McCulloch

Ann McCulloch, MBA, is the Co-founder and President of Orofacial Therapeutics Inc. and oversees the growing sales of the Company’s medical devices for orofacial pain and sales of QuickSplint in the dental market through the 2024 Distribution Agreement with Kettenbach USA. Orofacial Therapeutics Inc.’s company headquarters is in San Diego, CA.

When Ms. McCulloch met Dr. Eli, a short-term project evolved into a new career that now focuses on patient and provider education about orofacial pain, and marketing products to benefit patients. As a graduate of the Yale School of Management with personal experience in TMD and chronic pain, her extensive business relationships open the door for educational partnerships, product sales, and writing on the topics of occlusion, TMJ disorders, preventing chronic pain, and jaw injuries in sports.

Ann McCulloch was invited in December 2024 to serve as a member of the Forum on Temporomandibular Disorders conducted by the National Academies of Science Engineering and Medicine (NASEM). Forum members consist of public and private sector experts and stakeholders meeting over a two year period to explore opportunities for collective action. The focus of the Form is to “consider emerging issues in TMDs, facilitate cross-sector action, and foster long-term multidisciplinary relationships – all focused on improving research and care for people living with TMDs. Read more information on the National TMD Forum.

Dr. Bradley Eli

 Dr Bradley Eli, DMD, MS is the co-founder of Orofacial Therapeutics and inventor of QuickSplint and diagnostic protocols.  A helicopter pilot at age 15, dental school graduating class president at Temple University, and walking encyclopedia, Eli is a driven, gifted, and inventive problem-solver. Eli graduated in 1992 from the first Orofacial Pain and Dysfunction postgraduate residency program at UCLA School of Dentistry.  After graduating from this ground-breaking program, Dr. Eli developed treatment plans for complex orofacial pain patients at Loma Linda University Medical Center, and later at the UCSD Department of Anesthesiology and Scripps Memorial Hospital Pain Center. 

This comprehensive clinical experience solidified his understanding of clinical chronic pain management and integrated care models with neurology, rheumatology, otolaryngology, and pharmacology. Dr. Eli is the director of Facial Pain Specialists, a group practice limited to the treatment of orofacial pain and sleep disorders, with multiple locations in Southern California. Dr. Eli is nationally recognized for his expertise in successfully treating these challenging conditions, and serves on staff at three hospitals in San Diego, CA.

Dr. James Fricton

Dr. James Fricton, DDS, MS has played an integral role in helping establish the Orofacial Pain specialty, which was recognized by the American Dental Association in March 2020. Dr. Fricton is Professor Emeritus of the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry, Medicine, and Public Health, where he established one of the first university-based, multidisciplinary TMD and orofacial pain clinics, and helped define the Curriculum for Orofacial Pain specialty training programs. At the time, care for TMD treatment was focused on changing occlusion or TMJ surgery. 

Dr. Fricton proposed the use of the biopsychosocial model to achieve better outcomes to address not only the patient’s physical conditions but also focused on contributing factors.  He used human systems theory and cybernetics to explain the inter-relationships between contributing factors, and demonstrated the benefits of a team approach, consisting of a dentist, physical therapist, and health psychologist.

In 1985 Dr. Fricton created with partners the Minnesota Head and Neck Pain Clinic based on an interdisciplinary model of care that includes neurology, physical medicine, and rehabilitation specialists, now with four clinic sites in Minnesota. He has held top leadership positions in the American Academy of Orofacial Pain, the American Board of Orofacial Pain, the American Board of Dental Specialties, the American Pain Society, and the International Myopain Society.

Dr. James Elliott

Dr. James Elliott, PT, PhD, FAPT Dr. Elliott played professional baseball for the San Diego Padres and worked in major league baseball before becoming a trailblazer in physical therapy. He completed his PhD at the University of Queensland in 2007 and a post-doctoral fellowship in 2010. He has overseen large multidisciplinary studies investigating the neurobiological mechanism of persistent spinal pain associated with head/neck trauma with special emphasis on whiplash injury. He is currently a Professor in the Faculty of Medicine and Health at the University of Sydney and serves as an adjunct professor and principal investigator for the Neuromuscular Imaging Research Laboratory at Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University, Chicago.

In 2019, we attended a presentation by Dr. Elliott entitled, “Assessment, Prediction and Management of Patient with Head/Neck Disorder Post-Whiplash.”  Dr. Elliott shares our commitment to early intervention for acute craniofacial injury, conservative treatment combined with patient education, and assessment and diagnostic tools to identify and streamline access to care for patients who are likely to progress to chronic or intractable pain.  We shared our vision with Dr. Elliott and asked him to join the team and bring his extensive knowledge and physical therapy experience to bear on our products and training programs.

Dr. Brad Eli, DMD, MS
Dr. Brad Eli, DMD, MS
Ann McCulloch is the owner of Orofacial Therapeutics
Ann McCulloch, Yale MBA
Dr. James Fricton, DDS, MS is a partner
Dr. James Fricton, DDS, MS
Dr. James Fricton, DDS, MS is a partner
Dr. James Elliott, PT, PhD, FAPT

Focus on Patient-Centered Care

Here are just a few of the activities that make our team special, and reflect on our shared mission and purpose:

Dr. Friction’s pioneering work on establishing reliable and valid methods for establishing a diagnosis and measuring severity of TMD laid the foundation for patient-centered clinical research in the field. His first NIH/NIDCR funded research project was a longitudinal study of risk factors for chronic TMD pain. This study was one of the first to determine that behavioral and psychosocial factors were significant etiologic factors to chronic pain reinforcing the importance of the team approach to address contributing factors. He has authored more than 200 publications, five books, and spearheaded millions of dollars for research for relieving and preventing chronic TMD and orofacial pain conditions for the National Institutes of Health/National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIH/NIDCR). 

In 2002, Dr. Eli created the Continuing Education Alliance, a 501(c)3 dedicated to educating dental and medical providers about orofacial pain and the importance of differential diagnosis in developing treatment plans for chronic pain conditions.  Throughout 30-year career as an orofacial pain specialist, Dr. Eli has been deeply concerned about limited access to care for patients with complex conditions, given the limited number of board-certified specialists in the US.  Our company’s focus is largely driven by Dr. Eli’s commitment to early intervention for acute facial pain and prompt identification of patients that need expert evaluation and carefully development treatment plans.

Dr. Fricton has taught many courses on chronic pain with his most recent On-line Course on Preventing Chronic Pain: A Human Systems Approach at coursera.org/learn/chronic-pain.  Friction’s commitment to preventing chronic pain is further evident in his development of an online “pain prevention clinic” called the Personalized Activated Care & Training Program (www.pactforpain.com).  PACT is designed to provide transformative care, blending evidence-based treatment with extensive training of patients in how to manage their own pain. The goals and objectives of the PACT program align with Orofacial Therapeutics’ products and initiatives. Dr. Fricton joined our team in 2017 when we expanded our reach to assist patients and healthcare providers with the Speed2Treat® Home Healing Kit – a universal, consistent, conservative, and rapid response to craniofacial pain, and a potential improvement to prevent chronic pain and opioid use. 

Dr. Elliott, together with David Walton, PT, PhD, leads the Orofacial Therapeutics Study Club and has introduced a multidisciplinary group of participants that meet virtually to the APT Framework – Assess, Predict and Treat.  APT is a pragmatic approach to the management of acute and chronic post-traumatic musculoskeletal pain that includes assessment of a patient’s pain and disability experience.

Understanding Challenges Facing Orofacial Pain Patients

Ms. McCulloch oversees the growing sales of QuickSplint® and Speed2Treat, as well as the company’s expanding portfolio of resources and tools for jaw and headache pain diagnosis and treatment. Her chronic pain issues and subsequent relief strategies motivated her to investigate the needs and challenges of patients suffering from orofacial pain.

Each career relocation caused her to search for new treatment providers to address musculoskeletal conditions. Her search for relief resulted in a myriad of diagnoses and treatment modalities, including an ineffective dental treatment to reposition her jaw.

When Ms. McCulloch met Dr. Eli, a short-term project evolved into a new career that now focuses on patient and provider education about orofacial pain, and marketing products to benefit patients. 

Accomplishments of Orofacial Therapeutics

Our first product, the QuickSplint® temporary bite plane and patient aids were designed for use by general dentists, TMJ dentists, endodontists, periodontists, oral surgeons, and cosmetic dentists. We are proud to have QuickSplint included in the dental training programs offered around the world by the Pankey Institute, The Dawson Academy, Clinical Mastery Series, Esthetic Professionals, American Academy of Craniofacial Pain, and in the protocols taught by BioResearch Associates and Millennium Dental Technologies. Our protocols, developed in collaboration with dental industry leaders, include the Protocol for JAMSS (Jaw and Muscle Sprain, Strain), the S.A.F.E. Protocol to prevent JAMSS from dental procedures, and the Parafunction Risk Rating Protocol for diagnosing bruxism.

Since 2011, QuickSplint has been successful with an estimated 800,000 patients for jaw pain, deprogramming, protecting dental restorations, diagnostic uses and treatment planning.

QuickSplint is made in the US, is FDA 510k cleared and obtained the CE mark in 2017. The company works with distributors in the US, Canada, UK, Europe, India, Australia, and South Africa.

Also in 2020, Orofacial Therapeutics was named a Top 10 Pain Solution Provider by MedTech Outlook, a magazine for the medical industry that focuses on new ways of tackling healthcare challenges. Orofacial Therapeutics was selected for addressing facial pain in a manner that is low cost, scalable, and introduces a model for delivering standardized care for acute musculoskeletal pain conditions of the head and/or neck.

Partnerships

Orofacial Therapeutics is partnering with The TeleDentists® to serve urgent care needs

This partnership will focus on combatting acute jaw pain, TMJ flare-ups, and other pain of the head, neck, and jaw. The new collaboration aims to help people in pain to heal quickly and affordably from initial low-cost consultation to follow-up care.

The TeleDentists treat urgent oral and dental problems. The proprietary national network of experienced, board-licensed dentists are on call and available around the clock to provide virtual dental consults.

Under the new partnership, patients can arrange a virtual consultation with The TeleDentists. If appropriate, Speed2Treat will be recommended. The TeleDentists can provide an initial consultation and healing kit for less than $150, no insurance needed. It’s an easy, affordable way for patients to address their conditions. For those with more complex conditions that require specialized care, The TeleDentists® can help connect them with specialized providers.

We are honored to collaborate with The TeleDentists to help patients who don’t know where to go for jaw pain flare-ups or accident- or abuse-based trauma. The TeleDentists provide convenient, affordable access to care for patients who lack dental insurance or are hesitant to go to a medical or dental facility due to the COVID pandemic. We share a common goal to help patients in pain get relief as quickly as possible.

Read about Orofacial Therapeutics Named Top 10 Pain Solution Provider.

Contact Us

ann@orofacialtherapeutics.com

858-252-2264

Orofacial Therapeutics Inc.

6824 El Cajon Blvd

San Diego, CA 92115