The facial nerve or facial nerve provides the facial expression of the face (facial expressions). Also, closing your eyes and mouth is controlled by these nerve. The facial nerve comes from the brains and runs through a narrow, bony canal (tunnel) into the skull. First along the inner hearing organ, then along a middle ear bone (stirrup) to finally emerge in the parotid gland, which lies to the ear. This salivary gland splits the nerve at different branches to the muscles of the face. A small branch of this nerve runs to the tongue and takes care for the taste.
The facial nerve was compared to other nerves vulnerable. This is probably due to the close and long bony canal which runs the nerve. If, for whatever reason, the nerve is damaged, the nerve will function less well. The affected side of your face does not move well anymore. You have paralysis on this side. When the facial nerve (almost always on one side) is malfunctioning, is the function of the muscles in the face in half. This is called a facialisverlamming.
Causes of a facialisverlamming may include:
- ear infections;
- head injury or injury after surgery, for example on the ear or to the salivary gland;
- the shingles virus (herpes zoster oticus). These vesicles, such as chickenpox, visible ear area. The paralysis is often painful and sometimes accompanied by hearing loss and balance disorders;
- a tumor pressing on the nerve. It often paralysis occurs very gradually;
- the so-called tick bite disease (Lyme disease).
The result is a skewed face. The mouth hangs below the fold between the nose and mouth disappears and the eye is wider than on the healthy side. It is impossible to close the eye and attempted one sees the whites. This is caused by the turning-up of the eyeball. A common phenomenon that is not normally seen as the eyelid moves over there. The cheek is weak and that the mouth partially hangs down is talking and swallowing difficult. Sometimes runs saliva from the mouth.
A paralysis can be complete or incomplete. Upon an incomplete paralysis of the facial muscles are movable to a limited extent. An incomplete paralysis may still develop within a few days to a complete paralysis.
In case there remain residual symptoms, can reconstructive facial surgery belong to the possibilities. This is, of course, depending on the wishes of the individual patient and can vary from a gold weight in the upper eyelid in order to ensure that the eye close to better reconstructions with the aid of nerve transplantation. However, a normal situation, is no longer reached with the operation, and these are therefore to some extent resources. Alongside is visualized several reconstructive options.