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Pain Management

Pain management

At the Johns Hopkins Facial Paralysis and Pain Treatment Center, our doctors are on the forefront of pain management techniques for treating chronic facial pain.  Our experts consult with each other often, are leaders in their field and conduct research in the treatment of chronic facial pain.

Non-trigeminal neuralgia patients
Non-trigeminal neuralgia patients are typically suffering from facial pain due to injury or surgical trauma to the face.  For these patients we offer a combination of:

Nerve Blocks
There are several types of nerve blocks our doctors may use to treat facial pain.  These include:

  1. Trigeminal nerve block - A needle is placed in the region of the side of the face to numb the skin on the face.  This may help in diagnosing the source of pain.  This procedure is performed under x-ray guidance.  The relief, if obtained, last for several hours.  If the procedure produces pain relief, the patient may be a candidate for a radiofrequency procedure, where we use an electrical current to try to obtain anywhere from 3-6 months of relief.
  2. Supraorbital/Supratrochlear nerve block - A needle is placed in the region of the eyebrow to numb the skin on the forehead to help diagnose a source of pain.  This procedure is performed at the bedside.  Once again, relief may be obtained, but this is not a permanent procedure.
  3. Sphenopalantine ganglion block - Most commonly, we will place a swab in the nose to numb a group of nerves that is responsible for sensation in certain types of facial pain.  This procedure is performed at the bedside and produces temporary relief.  If successful, it may help the physician to begin certain medications or further procedures to attempt to manage a patient's pain.

Trigeminal Neuralgia patients
For our patients diagnosed with trigeminal neuralgia, Dr. Benjamin Carson is at the forefront of treating this chronic facial pain condition.  Our Center aims to provide comprehensive care and a full range of treatment options to patients suffering from this debilitating condition. We work to customize a treatment plan for each patient with the goal of relieving their pain quickly and restoring their quality of life.