Microvascular Decompression for Hemifacial Spasms and Trigeminal Neuralgia
Experiencing facial pain or twitching? Nothing seems to make it stop? This frustrating problem might be caused by an artery or vein that is compressing one of your nerves in your face.
To give you relief, our neurologists use a minimally invasive surgical procedure called microvascular decompression. Your doctor will use the technique to separate the blood vessel from the nerve to eliminate the pressure that is causing your symptoms.
Would you like to learn more about microvascular decompression? Contact us for a second opinion to get help for your pain or twitching. .
Symptoms of Hemifacial Spasms and Trigeminal Neuralgia
If you are experiencing facial pain or twitching, your neurologist will be able to diagnose what is going on. These symptoms can be signs of:
- Trigeminal neuralgia This condition causes major pain in your teeth, jaw, cheek, lips or gums that sometimes feels like an electric shock. Other times the pain may be mild. Pain can last for a few seconds, or you might have episodes that stretch on for a month. Your attacks may happen more regularly and more intensely over time. Trigeminal neuralgia occurs most often in women over the age of 50.
- Hemifacial spasm This condition causes involuntary facial twitches – as many as 20 per second – usually on one side of the face. (Spasms rarely occur on both sides of your face.) The spasms start around your eye and slowly move to the lower part of your face. They’re not painful, but can be embarrassing and annoying because you can’t control them.
What to Expect During Microvascular Decompression
During microvascular decompression surgery, your neurologist will make an incision behind your ear. Using a microscope, your neurologist will detect the spot where the blood vessel is putting pressure on your nerve. The doctor will separate them and insert a synthetic "pillow" between both to prevent sticking in the future.
Typically you’ll be out the hospital two days after surgery, and your staples will be removed after 14 days. The majority who undergo this procedure feel immediate relief.
Trigeminal neuralgia can be excruciating, and facial spasms are unsettling, at the very least. There’s a very good chance we can help. Contact us to get a second opinion and to learn how microvascular decompression surgery could eliminate your symptoms.