Associate Professor of Oral Medicine and Community Oral Health
Director of Oral Medicine Services
Chief, Division of Community Oral Health
Dr. Pinto joined the faculty in 2001 and serves as Director of the Oral Medicine Clinical Center at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Dental Medicine. He is a member of the Division of Oral Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania Medical Center, a University Associate at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and faculty at Penn’s MPH program. He maintains an intramural practice in the management of oral mucosal disease, orofacial pain, and dental care for medically complex patients.
Recent literature highlights the early appearance of cardiovascular disease and diabetes in children as a major public health concern. The oral health implications of early onset of metabolic disease are just being explored, as well as the role of dental providers in addressing early manifestations. In addition, the association of diseases such as diabetes and obesity and oral health in the young is unclear, as it is confounded and modified by many factors. Our group has conducted observational studies addressing the prevalence of overweight in dental settings and oral health considerations in children with cardiovascular disease.
Another research interest is outcome assessment in orofacial pain, including the epidemiology of orofacial pain in children and adolescents. Measurement issues challenge the translation of clinical trial results into practice and the validity of efficacy studies of current treatment alternatives in orofacial pain. Development and validation of patient-centered pain measures is crucial to understand the clinical significance of pain relief in this population and its relationship to changes in CNS imaging. A secondary interest is pain processing and perception in children and adolescents, in particular the effect of perceived pain experiences on attitudes towards dental treatment.