FACIAL PARALYSIS - WatsonsHealth

FACIAL PARALYSIS

Facial paralysis is medical condition wherein there is loss of movement in the face which may be due to nerve damage. The muscles of the face may appear drooping or weak. It can involve only one or both sides of the face.

Facial paralysis may be due to the following:

  • Infection of the facial nerve
  • Inflammation of the facial nerve
  • Head trauma
  • Head or neck tumor
  • Stroke

Types

Facial paralysis may be due to Bell’s palsy, Ramsay Hunt syndrome or Lyme disease.

Bell’s palsy is the most common form of facial paralysis. There is no known cause and it affects one side of the face.

Ramsay Hunt syndrome is usually caused by a virus that has infected the facial nerve. It is considered to be a more severe form of facial paralysis. There may be blisters on the ears and on the roof of the mouth.

Lyme disease is a form of bacterial infection from an infected tick. There may be a target-shaped rash before symptoms occur such as headaches, fever or body weakness.

 

Symptoms

Bell’s palsy can have the following symptoms:

  • Facial paralysis on one side
  • Loss of blinking control on the affected side
  • Decreased tearing
  • Drooping of the mouth to the affected side
  • Altered sense of taste
  • Slurred speech
  • Drooling
  • Pain in or behind the ear
  • Sound hypersensitivity on the affected side
  • Difficulty eating or drinking

Stroke can have the following symptoms:

  • Changes in level of consciousness
  • Confusion
  • Dizziness
  • Loss of coordination
  • Seizure
  • Changes in vision
  • Weakness in arms or legs on one side of your body

DIAGNOSIS

The doctor will get a medical history and may do physical examination. Tests such as electromyography may be requested, along with imaging scans and blood tests.

 

MEDICATIONS/TREATMENT

Bell’s palsy can be treated with oral steroids (such as prednisone) and antiviral medications. Physical therapy can also help.

Cosmetic surgery can correct the eyelids that will not fully close or a crooked smile.

For stroke, the patient needs to be hospitalized and given medicines for the brain.

Other treatments include surgery, Botox injections and physical therapy.

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