A mild case of Bell's palsy normally disappears within a month, but recovery from a more severe case involving total paralysis varies. Complications may include:
Dec. 16, 2014
- Irreversible damage to your facial nerve
- Misdirected regrowth of nerve fibers, resulting in involuntary contraction of certain muscles when you're trying to move others (synkinesis) — for example, when you smile, the eye on the affected side may close
- Partial or complete blindness of the eye that won't close due to excessive dryness and scratching of the cornea, the clear protective covering of the eye
- Bope ET, et al. Conn's Current Therapy. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2014. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Nov. 14, 2014.
- Glass GE, et al. Bell's palsy: A summary of current evidence and referral algorithm. Family Practice. In press. Accessed Nov. 14, 2014.
- Ferri FF. Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2015: 5 Books in 1. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2015. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Nov. 14, 2014.
- Bell's palsy fact sheet. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/bells/detail_bells.htm. Accessed Nov. 14, 2014.
- Ronthal M. Bell's palsy: Pathogenesis, clinical features, and diagnosis in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 15, 2014.
- Ronthal M. Bell's palsy: Prognosis and treatment in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 15, 2014.
- Facial nerve palsy. The Merck Manual Professional Edition. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/neurologic_disorders/neuro-ophthalmologic_and_cranial_nerve_disorders/facial_nerve_palsy.html?qt=&sc=&alt=. Accessed Nov.16, 2014.
- AskMayoExpert. What is the initial therapy recommended for patients with Bell palsy? Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2014.