Trigeminal neuralgia is a chronic pain condition which usually affects the trigeminal nerve. There are two kinds of trigeminal neuralgia: typical trigeminal neuralgia and atypical trigeminal neuralgia.
Trigeminal neuralgia is more common among women than men, and it is more likely to occur in people over 50. Trigeminal neuralgia may worsen over time and it is difficult to be cured. Some treatments can help to relieve its symptoms and reduce pain. Rhizotomy is one of the effective treatments for the disease.
Rhizotomy is a kind of surgery in which doctor will destroy nerve fibers to reduce pain, this method may lead to some side effects such as facial numbness. There are different types of rhizotomy.
In this procedure, doctor will use a thin needle to insert through your face and into an opening in the base of your skull. Then the needle will be guided into the trigeminal cistern, doctor will inject some sterile glycerol into the area. This method helps to damage the trigeminal nerve and block pain signals.
Radiofrequency thermal lesioning.
Like glycerol injection, your doctor will insert a hollow needle through your face and will guide it to a part of the trigeminal nerve that goes through an opening at the base of your skull. Then doctor will insert an electrode through the needle and send a mild electrical current through the tip of the electrode to find the part of the nerve involved in your pain. The heated electrode will damage the nerve fibers and reduce pain.
At first, you doctor will insert a hollow needle through your face and guides it to a part of the trigeminal nerve that goes through an opening at the base of your skull. Then doctor will thread a thin tube with a balloon which is inflated with enough pressure on the end through the needle. The pressure will damage the trigeminal nerve and ease pain.
Keywords: rhizotomy trigeminal neuralgia