The type of neuralgia which occasionally follows herpes zoster has been, so far as I am aware, almost intractable to treatment. Bailey1 expressed the belief that the pain is not susceptible to surgical relief. This author and others—Craig,2 Frazier3 and Peet4—have asserted that the responsible lesion must be central.
That the major pathologic changes in herpes zoster exist in the cerebrospinal ganglia has been clearly demonstrated by Head and Campbell5 and others. Consequently, since a major lesion is known to exist in the gasserian ganglion after zoster of trigeminal distribution, it has seemed incredible that section of the fifth sensory root would not abolish the pain.
I, as well as others (Harris6), have relieved postherpetic neuralgia in the distribution of one or more spinal nerves by section of posterior roots, but two or three roots above and below the distribution involved must also
HYNDMAN OR. POSTHERPETIC NEURALGIA IN THE DISTRIBUTION OF THE CRANIAL NERVES: EVIDENCE FOR SYMPATHETIC MEDIATION AND SURGICAL CURE. Arch NeurPsych. 1939;42(2):224–232. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1939.02270200044004
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