Taking the shooting pain away
The best option
There are two ways of dealing with trigeminal neuralgia, MediScene learns.
The two options are pharmacological or surgical.n Pharmacological therapy – Two sets of medications are prescribed, with each set consisting of three medications taken orally.
The first set comprises carbamazepine, baclofen and lamotrigine and the second clonazepam, gabapentin and topiramate.
Sometimes a cocktail (mix) of these drugs are given.n Surgical option – This has three methods: the minimally-invasive percutaneous stereotactic radiofrequency lesioning (RFL) of the trigeminal ganglion; gamma-knife radiation of the trigeminal route; and microvascular decompression (MVD) through posterior fossa approach.
The latter is to relieve abnormal compression of a cranial nerve.Stressing that pharmacological therapy has its limitations due to recurrence, side-effects caused by taking medications long-term and high expense for the patient in buying the drugs, Dr. Jayantha Liyanage points out that the surgical option is better and tolerated well.
However, in the surgical option, the gamma-knife radiation is not available in Sri Lanka, while the minimally-invasive RFL does not address the cause, as such with a high chance of pain-recurrence.
Dr. Liyange says that MVD, meanwhile, addresses the cause of the pain and brings about a cure. He speaks with evidence in hand, having performed MVD on 15 patients, with even the first patient, H.D. Patrick, who underwent this procedure four years ago having no recurrence of pain.