Trigeminal neuralgia is an inflammation of the trigeminal nerve which carries sensations from the face to the brain. As a result, there is intense and chronic facial pain, especially on the right side. Trigeminal neuralgia causes severe pain even with simple activities such as brushing teeth or applying makeup, affecting daily life.
The condition begins as mild attacks which last for a short time and progresses to long-lasting, and searing pain which occurs more frequently. Usually, it lasts for a few seconds to minutes or hours. However, uncontrolled trigeminal neuralgia can become chronic but is not life-threatening.
One or more of the following symptoms are exhibited by the patients with trigeminal neuralgia:
If there is facial pain, especially for prolonged periods which is recurring and does not get relieved with over-the-counter pain-relieving medicines such as paracetamol, then consult the doctor.
In most of the cases, the exact of cause trigeminal neuralgia is not known. The possible causes include:
The other causes include:
A wide variety of daily activities can trigger pain in patients with trigeminal neuralgia. These include:
Although trigeminal neuralgia affects people of any age group, it is more common in people older than 60 years. The other factors which increase the chances of developing trigeminal neuralgia are:
People with trigeminal neuralgia are likely to develop the below complications:
It is sometimes difficult to diagnose trigeminal neuralgia and the confirmation of the condition can take few years in some cases. The doctor asks for the symptoms, i.e. description of the pain in detail. Some of the questions which the patient needs to answer include:
To rule out other conditions which can cause similar symptoms, the doctor will need further tests which include:
Treatment helps to reduce the risk of remission. Treatment options for trigeminal neuralgia include medications and surgery as detailed below:
Geeta Dutta, a patient from West Bengal got in touch with Dr Venugopal Subramaniam, Consultant Neurosurgeon at Manipal Hospitals Whitefield through the OPD clinic programme and then later was guided by him towards a craniotomy & brain tumour removal.
Manika Saha, a patient from West Bengal got in touch with Dr. Venugopal Subramaniam, Consultant Neurosurgeon at Manipal Hospitals Whitefield through the OPD clinic programme and then later was guided by him towards a brain tumour removal in Whitefield, Bengaluru which gave her vision back.
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