What is the prognosis of congenital facial paralysis?

Updated: Jan 07, 2019
  • Author: Alan D Bruns, MD, FACS; Chief Editor: Arlen D Meyers, MD, MBA  more...
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Answer

More than 90% of patients with facial nerve paralysis caused by trauma recover without treatment. When the palsy is of developmental origin the parents should be informed that the child will never have an entirely normal appearance. The best outcome expected in these cases is facial symmetry at rest, near symmetry with voluntary movement, and spontaneous emotive movement.

A study by Domantovsky et al of patients with Möbius syndrome who, at mean age 13.2 years, underwent smile reconstruction with a gracilis muscle transplant (with innervation via the motor nerve to the masseter), found that at a mean follow-up of 20.4 years, improvements in muscle movement had not diminished. [54]


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