FACIAL NERVE PARALYSIS

Facial nerve paralysis

  •  A neurological condition in which the facial nerve supplying the face, responsible for facial expressions, is partially or completely paralysed.
  •  Paresis, often with complete paralysis, develops within hours and is usually maximal within 48 to 72 hours.
  •   The affected side becomes flat and expressionless; the ability to wrinkle the forehead, blink, and grimace is limited or absent. The patient may be unable to close the eye, leading to drying to the cornea and damage, affecting the vision of the patient.
  • Some of the causes of facial nerve paralysis are as follows:

    Central:

  •  Brain abscess
  •  Multiple sclerosis
  •  Encephalitis
  •  Pontine glioma
  • Along its course:

  •  Acoustic neuroma
  •  Meningioma
  •  Bell’s palsy
  •  Melkersson Rosenthal syndrome
  •  Infections of the middle ear
  •  Infections of the outer ear
  •  Herpes
  •  Malignancy
  •  Surgery of the parotid gland
  •  During surgery of the ear
  •  Trauma to the skull base
  •  Trauma at birth
  •  Facial injuries
  • Systemic:

  •  Diabetes
  •  Hypertension
  •  Pregnancy
  •  Hyperthyroidism
  •  First step in management is to determine the cause of facial nerve paralysis. If idiopathic, the patient is started on corticosteroids within the first 48 hours resulting in faster and possibly complete recovery of the nerve. If the palsy is due to trauma, the patient may require surgical decompression.