A cosmetic operation to smooth
out wrinkles and lift sagging skin on an
aging face. The effect is achieved by lift-
ing the skin off the face and removing
the excess. The skin is then stitched
back together within the hairline. The
effect usually lasts about 5 years.
facet joint
A type of joint found in the
, formed by the bony knob (called
a process) of one vertebra fitting into a
hollow in the vertebra above. Facet joints
allow a degree of movement between
individual vertebrae, which gives the
spine its flexibility.
facial nerve
The 7th
cranial nerve
arises from structures in the
and sends branches to the face, neck,
salivary glands, and outer ear.
The facial nerve performs both motor
and sensory functions. It controls the
muscles of the neck and of facial expres-
sion, stimulates the secretion of saliva,
and conveys sensory information from
the tongue and from the outer ear.
Damage to the nerve causes weakness
of the facial muscles (see
facial palsy
and, in some cases, loss of taste. Such
damage is most often due to a viral
infection but may also occur in
facial pain
Pain in the face may be due
to a variety of causes, of which injury is
the most obvious. Facial pain is also
commonly due to infection, particularly
. Problems with
the teeth and jaws are another common
cause of facial pain. They include severe
caries (see
caries, dental),
an abscess
abscess, dental
), impacted wisdom
teeth (see
impaction, dental
), or partial
dislocation of the jaw (see
jaw, dislo-
). Damage to a nerve that supplies
the face can
produce severe pain,
including the knife-like pain that pre-
cedes the one-sided rash in
and the intermittent shooting
pain of
trigeminal neuralgia
A disorder elsewhere in the body may
result in
referred pain
in the face. For
example, in
, pain may be felt in
the jaw. In
pain may occur on
one side of the face. Facial pain that
occurs for no apparent reason may be a
symptom of
Analgesic drugs
can provide tempor-
ary relief, but severe or persistent facial
pain requires medical attention,
fa c ia l
p a ls y
Weakness of the facial
muscles due to inflammation of or dam-
age to the
facial nerve.
The condition is
usually temporary and affects only one
side of the face.
Facial palsy is most often due to Bell's
palsy, which occurs for no known reason.
Less commonly, facial palsy is associated
herpes zoster
affecting the ear and
facial nerve. Facial palsy may also result
from surgical damage to this nerve or
compression of the nerve by a tumour.
Facial palsy usually comes on suddenly.
The eyelid and corner of the mouth
droop on one side
of the face and
there may be pain
in the ear on that
side. The sense of
taste may be im-
paired or sounds
may seem to be
unnaturally loud.
In many cases,
facial palsy clears
up without treat-
ment. Pain can be
relieved by taking
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