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August 1989

Facial Nerve Decompression Late in the Course of Bell's Palsy

Author Affiliations

Portsmouth, Va

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1989;115(8):903-905. doi:10.1001/archotol.1989.01860320013003

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At the meeting of the Western Section of The Triological Society in Laguna Niguel, Calif, Jack Pulec, MD, Los Angeles, Calif, reported on the effectiveness of facial nerve decompression late in the course of Bell's palsy.

According to Pulec, it has been proved that facial nerve decompression performed early in the course of Bell's palsy prevents the complications of the disease, but it has not yet been accepted that facial nerve decompression performed late in the course of Bell's palsy is beneficial.

Pulec presented a series of patients who had undergone total facial nerve decompression 8 months to 5 years after the original injury, all of whom having significant improvement in facial function. His series of patients fell into two basic surgical categories: those with persistent severe nerve edema and those with atropic segments. Surgical relief of isolated constricted areas was felt to relieve proximal edema and to allow dramatic

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