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Write Date: 09-03-25 11:36
Facial palsy
 Writer : KHMCOM
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Facial palsy is a condition which exhibits slanting of the lips and inability to blink. In Korean medicine, it is called "crooked eye and mouth," or "twisting stroke." The ala nasi of the affected nose slides down while pronouncing "Ee" with markedly smaller nostril. The end of lips hangs down and twists to the other side. When a patient looks upward the wrinkle of the forehead disappears. In case of old people, weakness can cause sagging of eyebrows.
Facial palsy can accompany a series of symptoms or any one of the following phenomena. It may be presented along with post auricular pain, which is a dull pain of the mastoid area, that starts to ache a day or two beforehand to facial palsy and occasionally continue on throughout the couse of the disease. When the eyelids are paralysed the eyes are open to many stimuli that cause stinging and excess tearing. Impaired movement of the muscles that control the lacrimal gland can sometimes cause the eyes to be dry too. Occasionally, the damaged facial nerve cannot taste on the affected side. One's hearing can both be sharpened or blunted with a sense of deafness. Many patients complain dizziness, but this symptom can be brought on by weakness also. In few cases facial palsy happens to those with problems of the brain.

Facial palsy is divided into peripheral and central types. Peripheral type is the majority of them. It is a problem of the facial nerve that originates from the brain, and affects only the facial muscles and does not render any symptom of the extremities or language. Central facial palsy is a result of stroke, either cerebral infarction or hemorrhage. In case of central facial palsy, the patient can wrinkle the forehead, unlike peripheral facial palsy.

What causes facial palsy is still a mystery. Facial palsy of unknown etiology is called Bell's palsy. Other factors include inflammation by the viral infiltration, trauma of the skull, tumor, and complecation of otitis. In Korean medicine, External and Internal Damage cause facial palsy, often by exposure to a cold wind. That is why it is called "twisting stroke." In Korean medicine, any abrubt onset of a disease, such as stroke, is thought to be caused by Wind, one of the six outer influences to our body. Therefore the key to treating this illness is to rest the body and mind and avoid sudden change of temperature or any external setting.

The sooner the recovery of facial palsy the better the prognosis. If the palsy is prolonged some sequelae may remain, such as hemifacial spasm, facial muscle contracture, and associated movement, e.g. mandibulopalpebral synkinesis.

The various tests a patient takes include DITI (digital infrared thermographic imaging), biofunctional tests (동맥경화도, 맥파), 근전도, and MRI. The MRI lets us know whether the facial palsy is central or peripheral. Sometimes a tumor in the brain can also apply pressure to the facial nerve and cause facial palsy. The 근전도 enables estimation of the amount of damage to the nerve and the prognosis of the symptom. Biofunctional tests and DITI are generally used to aid assessment of the differential diagnosis in Korean medicine.

Ways of treating this illness in Korean medicine are various. Acupuncture is the most generally used means of treatment, and is thought to be the most effective. Moxibustion can also greatly help in facial palsy patients, especially by communicating the Ki and Blood of the meridians, thereby strengthening the natural healing power. Herbal medication is prescribed according to the particular differential diagnosis of the patient. In most cases, facial palsy is caused by problem in the flow of Ki, and medication is focused on improving that flow. TDP or infrared


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