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Bell's Palsy vs. Facial Paralysis

Avatar Dr. Kyle Bickel Jun 21, 2019

The confusion that comes around Bell’s Palsy is that there are not different types of Bell’s Palsy – there are different types of facial paralysis or facial paresis. Facial weakness (or weakness of the muscles in the face) can be caused by a large, large number of things. When that cause is unknown, it is “acute” meaning it’s sudden onset and it’s on one side of the face. Those criteria – that makes it Bell’s Palsy and that is when you’re really guided down the road of treating someone like they have Bell’s Palsy. Still, you do need to work up other things so people would send you for an MRI or a CAT scan to make sure you’re not having a stroke or any other issues unless it is a clear cut Bell’s Palsy.

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