Many patient suffer from Trigeminal Neuralgia, also known as tic douloureux, a chronic pain condition associated with sharp facial pain. While Trigeminal Neuralgia may be treated medically, when medical management fails to control the pain, surgical intervention is an option.
There is more than one possible cause for trigeminal neuralgia pain:
- Pressure on the trigeminal nerve caused by a blood vessel, usually the superior cerebellar artery
- Multiple sclerosis
- Injury/damage to a nerve
- Lack of protective insulation on the trigeminal nerve
Trigeminal Neuralgia Symptoms
People diagnosed with trigeminal neuralgia experience intermittent shooting pain on one side of the face, coming from one or more branches of the trigeminal nerve. The pain lasts a few seconds and can be triggered by chewing, swallowing, talking or other sensory stimulation to the face.
Some patients have facial pain that lasts throughout the day. This pain pattern is considered “atypical.” While these chronic symptoms can be treated with the same techniques, the outcomes are not as good.