Awards, Faculty and Staff, Research

Maixner Receives American Pain Society Fordyce Clinical Investigator Award

Dr. William Maixner, director of the Regional Center for Neurosensory Disorders (RCNSD), was recently named the recipient of the 2013 Wilbert E. Fordyce Clinical Investigator Award. The award, presented annually by the American Pain Society (APS), honors an individual for career achievement in pain-focused clinical research.

“To be recognized with the Fordyce Award for our program’s dedication to pain research is quite humbling,” said Maixner. “Those who received this award before me are in the upper echelon of pain researchers. I’m honored to be considered a part of that highly-regarded group of people.”

Maixner and his colleagues are widely known for their work in pain research. In addition to directing the RCNSD, he helped develop the school’s Pain Management Program that treats patients who suffer from chronic pain disorders, like temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJD). His research examines potential contributing factors to chronic pain conditions, such as genetics, environmental conditions and biopsychosocial elements. Much of his recent research has been conducted as a part of the OPPERA and OPPERA II (Orofacial Pain Prospective Evaluation and Risk Assessment) grants which examine these factors in an effort to better treat chronic pain conditions. OPPERA II also aims to identify overlap between TMJD and other pain disorders, like migraine headaches, irritable bowel syndrome and low back pain. Maixner, with Dr. Gary Slade, serves as the program director of OPPERA II, as he did for OPPERA before the study ended in 2011. He has also authored more than 180 peer-reviewed articles and presented internationally and to the U.S. Senate.

According to the APS website, the Wilbert E. Fordyce Clinical Investigator Award was established in 1995 and is named for its first recipient, Wilbert E. Fordyce, Ph.D. Other past recipients have also devoted much of their careers to pain-focused clinical research.