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Posted: 10/13/2005 7:36:05 AM EDT
Has anybody ever heard of this disease? Know anybody that had it and how long did it take to go away??
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:38:16 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/13/2005 7:41:02 AM EDT by operatorerror]
Yep.

Know a guy who had an attack a few years back. He thought that he was having a stroke. Perfectly fine now but it scared the crap out of him at the time. Don't know how long it took to "go away"though.

ETA a website with some easy answers.

bellspalsy.ws/
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:38:40 AM EDT
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:38:54 AM EDT
Facial nerve damage.  Can lead to facial paralysis.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:42:03 AM EDT

Originally Posted By j-fonz:
Facial nerve damage.  Can lead to facial paralysis.



In the worst cases only.  


Most of your nerves in your face run in small canals in your skull.  When they get infected it actually pinches off the nerve and you lose some function.  Most of the time the worst part is a corner of the mouth that droops, drooling or the worst is an eyelid that will not blink to keep your eye moist.  If the eye gets too bad you might have to have a doctor tape the eyelid shut to keep it from drying out.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:42:16 AM EDT
The guy I knew that had it took about 6 months to recover.

www.emedicinehealth.com/articles/9173-1.asp  click the links on the right for different sections of information.

Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:44:05 AM EDT

Originally Posted By so2315:
Has anybody ever heard of this disease? Know anybody that had it and how long did it take to go away??



I had it about 10 years ago.

It lasted 6-8 weeks, but after I started with physical therapy I got better and better.  I was 98% by 8 weeks, took a couple of months more to get back to 100%.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:45:20 AM EDT
A friend has it right now.

He did have to have his eye taped shut.

But its going away and he is getting better.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:46:58 AM EDT
My F-I-L had it a couple of years ago - we thought he was having a mild stroke when the symptoms first presented.  Took a few months to go away in his case - no sign at all today.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:53:04 AM EDT
Thanks for the quick replies. It really does scare the living hell out of you. It is so sudden, you just wake up and it is there. I just hope nobody else here gets it!!
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:55:43 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/13/2005 7:56:31 AM EDT by jimtash9]
There's an announcer that works for the WWE by the name of Jim Ross and he has it. He had an attack several years ago and the right side of his face still hasn't fully recovered from it.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:55:56 AM EDT

Originally Posted By so2315:
Thanks for the quick replies. It really does scare the living hell out of you. It is so sudden, you just wake up and it is there. I just hope nobody else here gets it!!



Oh, it happened to YOU!!!

In that case, you're going to die!!!
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 8:03:54 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/13/2005 8:05:18 AM EDT by Carbine_Man]
By odd chance I knew three people that got it.  First was a twenty-something guy I worked with who walked into the office with it one day.   He eventually full recoverd, but it was rough.  Second was the wife of a friend of mine, mid-thirties.  She didn't recover fully.  Last was a guy in his mid-fifties.  Also never fully recovered.

The wierd thing is that it strikes without warning.  These folks just woke up one morning with half their face sagging down.  Very wierd.  They all were extremely embarassed and self-conscious about it.

I certainly hope you fully recover!  And don't let embarrassment ruin you!
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 8:04:51 AM EDT
My F-I-L had it. His never went away. He had a slight lisp and the left side of his mouth drooped down.  
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 8:09:49 AM EDT
my dad had that. it took a couple of months til it went away. his mouth was crooked, and so were his eyes. it must of sucked.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 8:47:33 AM EDT
I got it about 15 years ago. I was replacing the CV joints on my bronco laying on the freezing cement in the garage in January. Next day when I awoke, half of my face felt like novacaine. I understand it is common with cab drivers and bus drivers (draft in the ear canal). After a couple of weeks on antibiotics, about 85% cleared-up. Now one eye tears-up when I eat and that's probably as good as I'll get.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 8:52:50 AM EDT
It's caused by damage to the 7th cranial nerve that results in muscle paralysis to the face.  It can be cause by trauma to the nerve or infection.  Sometime it last a few weeks, sometimes it can last for years depending on the extent of damage.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 8:58:03 AM EDT
My brother had it a couple years ago. Yeah, it scared the shit out of him at first - he had no idea what was happening to him. He had to wear a patch on his eye at night to sleep. He also walked around school holding his hand over his face because he was embarrassed. It went away after a few weeks.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 9:02:39 AM EDT
My mother-in-law had it. One side of her face sagged and had no muscle control at all. (Not that she was going to win any beauty contests, anyway.) It took them a long time to figure out what it was. They thought it was a stroke, or all kinds of other things.

It went away after a couple of months with no treatment. YMMV.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 9:47:12 AM EDT
I have known of several people who have gotten it, including my niece.  It takes several months for it to go away.  It is treated with steroids and antiviral medicines (I think, going from memory here).  

I think I read somewhere that it is more common in some parts of the country than others.  PA comes to mind.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 9:53:18 AM EDT
Lyme Disease can cause Bell's Palsy
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 9:54:38 AM EDT

Originally Posted By A_Free_Man:
I have known of several people who have gotten it, including my niece.  It takes several months for it to go away.  It is treated with steroids and antiviral medicines (I think, going from memory here).  
.



They also use muscular shock during the Physical Therapy (it's not really painful - they are just trying to stimulate the muscles).  Think of the device as a low powered stun gun.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 10:03:23 AM EDT
I had it 20 years ago.  Quite scary to wake up with your face paralyzed as a 23 year old.  It took 6 weeks or so to clear up.  Had to sleep with my eye lid taped shut for a couple weeks.  Usually has no long term effects.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 3:03:37 PM EDT
I got it on July 25th, 2005. It took me until about the first week of September to get close to full recovery. I am probably 99.5% now. My right eye still gets a little dry at times but other than that I am recovered. My recovery was on the fast side of normal and sometimes very painful. About 25% of people with Bell's experience pain during recovery.

It scared the hell out of me too. I thought I was having a stroke. That is very common with Bell's.

As stated before. Bell's is caused by inflamation of the 7th cranial nerve. According to my doctor they do not really know what causes Bell's. Although about 60% to 70% of the people that get Bell's have Herpes 1 (oral). Having herpes 1 is not as uncommon as most people think. It is estmated that better than 50% of the population have oral herpes. 85% of people that have it will never show a sign. Herpes 1 is most often transmitted from mother to children.

Most people that get Bell's report that they have had some form of virus in the week or so before the onset. What they believe happens is that once a persons immune system gets kicked on it then gets a little carried away and starts attacking anything and everything. Since all inflamation is caused by the bodies immune system, Bell's is actually your bodies reaction (or over reaction) to a virus.

What I have read that says that better than 80% of the people that get Bell's fully recover in 3 months. A very small minority (less than 1%) will have little or no recovery.

According to my doctor, getting Bell's has no effect on whether you will get it again. A person that has had Bell's is as likely to get Bell's as the next person. Bell's strikes the left and right sides with about the same frequency. There are 3 population groups that are about 5 times more likely to get Bell's, pregnant women, diabetics and people with HIV.

YMMV
Rusty
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 3:10:18 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Papertargets:
The guy I knew that had it took about 6 months to recover.

www.emedicinehealth.com/articles/9173-1.asp  click the links on the right for different sections of information.




+1
It was tough for my friend but he made it through. About 6months.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 3:13:09 PM EDT
my aunt has it. Half of her face is paralyzed. It can last between a few weeks and the rest of the victims life
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 3:14:09 PM EDT
I had bells palsy 3 seperate times when I was very young between 2 and 4. Barely remember anyting from it. It came from hitting my head. It lasts longer eachtime and the doctor sadi if it happens again I may have to have brain surgery to correct it. I am now 28 and have been in numerous street fights and did 4 years in the marines so you know that I have suffered some head damages and no relapses. You can tell if you look at the right side of my face, atleast I can, the right corner of my mouth and eye set a little different from the left a little lower. But other than that its fine.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 3:53:21 PM EDT
I dealt with it about 4 1/2 years ago, right before having back surgery. It affected the left side of my face, and I thought that I had a stroke......scared me, till the ER Dr told me what it was.  
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 4:02:27 PM EDT
Thanks for the bad memories.  I got it as a result of wisdom teeth surgery.  Scared the hell out of me. I would say it lasted around 6 weeks and now I am about 98%.  It makes it damn difficult to eat a hamburger when half your face is lying down on the job. Oh yeah a stripper informed me that I never smiled....I turned and looked at her and she freaked...only half of my face was smiling.....
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 4:28:27 PM EDT
Yes, I had it this summer. The right side of my face was frozen. It made it hard to eat properly and I couldn't close my right eye all the way shut. Thankfully, I was symptom free after about four weeks. I was so embarrassed but everyone at the placed I worked were real nice about it.

The strange thing is that my dad and his dad have had it also.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 4:59:00 PM EDT
I had it a few years ago and my experience mirrors much of whathas already been posted.

Get and use the eye goop they recommend.  If your eye on the affected side isn't closing normally you do not want it popping open in the middle of the night and drying out.  I used the goop and taped my eyelid down.


I noticed some improvement within just a couple of weeks and was fine in under  two months.

+1 on it being a pain to eat a burger!
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 5:09:30 PM EDT
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 5:37:57 PM EDT
My daughter had it, I forget which vitamin can help, possibly, but it should be done quickly to have an effect.  Google and read, is what I did, then went to health store.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 6:13:43 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/13/2005 6:15:16 PM EDT by so2315]
I am surprised so many people have had this, yet I never have heard of it. Now that I have it, and am suffering through my 4th day, I feel better knowing that many of you also have had it and came out fine. I am on Prednisone and Valtrex. Started the vitamin B-12 also. Let's hope for the best!
Also, I have been getting some slight twitching on the affected side, is this a good thing?
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 6:26:03 PM EDT
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 6:28:00 PM EDT
A lady that worked for me suffered with this from time to time over the course of several years.  She said something about irritation or inflamation of the 5th cranial nerve.  Whenever there was office furniture being moved around, stirring up dust, that seemed to start her feeling like she was going to have another relapse.  She took meds for it but I'm sorry I can't recall what they were.   Her first episode was the worst.  One sided facial paralysis.  Nasty stuff.   After that, when she felt a relaspe coming on, she pumped up on the meds per her doctor's advice of course.  I never saw her have an episode as bad as the first.  I guess the meds kept it in check.   Chronic but the effects seemed to lesson over time.  Good luck.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 6:30:33 PM EDT
I had some of the twitching also, and after all this time I still have some in my right eye at times........


Originally Posted By so2315:
I am surprised so many people have had this, yet I never have heard of it. Now that I have it, and am suffering through my 4th day, I feel better knowing that many of you also have had it and came out fine. I am on Prednisone and Valtrex. Started the vitamin B-12 also. Let's hope for the best!
Also, I have been getting some slight twitching on the affected side, is this a good thing?

Link Posted: 10/13/2005 6:46:21 PM EDT

Originally Posted By brouhaha:
One of my closest friends got this when she was about 12.  She told me that one day, she couldn't keep food or drink in her mouth, but didn't know why.  A few days later, the right side of her face was paralyzed.  Her grandmother had the same condition, apparantly it skips a generation.



Though it isn't strictly hereditary, people can have congenitally small facial canals and are much more susceptible to Bell's Palsy.  I've seen families where several siblings and a parent had the condition.  It isn't unusual in such instances to have recurrences on both sides.  I saw one patient who had it 7 times, 3 on the right and 4 on the left over a 25 year period.  
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:15:15 PM EDT
I hate to butt in here, but I have been watching this post staying quiet..I had the desiese and It took about 2 weeks to get over with the use of steriods(yes doctor perscribed)  What it is is the 7th cranial nerve that gets pinched ..Doctors still do not know what causes this.. Now a days they do not suscribe steroids in most cases and I dont know why..It worked well for me.. I have found threw time that when I run myself down with lots of work or sleeep that the symptoms do come back ever so slightly.. Best way to tell If someone has this Is watching there left eye and mouth.. Yes it does only efect the left side and mnot the right.. I had it back at the age of 24...(yes 24) good thing to as the skin is still tight in the face and you cant see the dropping as you will in older people... I hope this helps you all In understanding a little better.....L.S
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:24:28 PM EDT
I have a neighbor who is an old lady and got it somehow as a result of cancer.  We figured it would never go away but it mostly has disappeared after a year or so.

GunLvr
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:26:11 PM EDT
One of my buds in highschool got it and half of his face had a little droop to it.
Link Posted: 10/13/2005 7:38:17 PM EDT

Originally Posted By LandSharkTBC:
I hate to butt in here, but I have been watching this post staying quiet..I had the desiese and It took about 2 weeks to get over with the use of steriods(yes doctor perscribed)  What it is is the 7th cranial nerve that gets pinched ..Doctors still do not know what causes this.. Now a days they do not suscribe steroids in most cases and I dont know why..It worked well for me.. I have found threw time that when I run myself down with lots of work or sleeep that the symptoms do come back ever so slightly.. Best way to tell If someone has this Is watching there left eye and mouth.. Yes it does only efect the left side and mnot the right.. I had it back at the age of 24...(yes 24) good thing to as the skin is still tight in the face and you cant see the dropping as you will in older people... I hope this helps you all In understanding a little better.....L.S



Actually, doctors do know what causes it.  Viral invasion of the facial nerve within the facial canal causes the nerve to swell.  There isn't enough room for the inflamed expanding nerve within the canal and the nerve is injured.  If only the myelin sheath is damaged then the nerve can recover within 1-2 weeks.  If the axons are damaged then it can take months for recovery which isn't always complete.  Over a dozen different viruses have been cultured from spinal fluid in patients with Bell's Palsy and many other pathogens can infect the nerve such as the Lyme spirochete and syphilus.

Bell's Palsy occurs on either side with equal frequency as posters here will be glad to point out.  
Link Posted: 10/14/2005 2:44:20 AM EDT
I came down with Bell's Palsey about 13 years ago. Woke up one morning and felt fine (other than a tingling sensation in my toungue for the first few days) until I looked in the mirror. I appeared to have had a stroke on the right side of my face. The entire right side of my face would not move at all. My doctors office got me in right away. Doc determined that I had Bell's. Prescribed the usual anti-viral and other meds. Made no difference. After a few months, I started to regain some facial movement. I still have remnants after all these years, although it is not as noticible unless you look for it.

I never lost any sense of feeling in my face. But my right eye wouldn't close and watered excessively. Still does water, especially when I eat. However, I can now blink almost normally and close the right eye without problem. I am not sure if it's related to the Bell's, but my spectacle prescription changed three times in that first year. My right eye is still weak, hard to focus and can be corrected to no better than 20/30 - 20/40. I have to shoot handguns by aiming with my left eye. Very hard to shoot long guns as I am a right-handed only shooter. The right side of my mouth still has a loss of movement, but not as bad as then. The right side of my mouth will move just a little bit. My forehead will wrinkle slightly if I try really hard.

I never had any of the other symptoms such as fatigue. As a hobby, I play the trumpet. My lips are weak on that side which causes a slight bit of problem in my endurance and high note range, but nothing too severe. I play as badly as I ever did.

Bell's is more agravating than anything.

Scott
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