Acyclovir Versus Steroids in the Treatment of Bell’s Palsy

  • M. L. Navarrete
  • P. Quesada
  • V. Gimeno
  • A. Garcia
  • M. Garcia
Conference paper


Bell’s palsy is the most common form of all facial paralyses with a peripheral cause [1]. In spite of this, at present we do not have any specific treatment at our disposal, since the etiopathogenesis of the disease has not been sufficiently proven. Most authors support its immunovirological origin, which implies the reactivation of a latent virus as a leading agent of cross-immunological chain reactions between the facial nerve and the viral antigens [5]. Until now, a number of empirical treatments have been implemented. Findings which demonstrated an inflammatory reaction on a local and systemic level, immunity changes at a peripheral level, and the phenomena of nervous demyelination gave rise to steroidal therapy [6, 7]. Nevertheless, these results have been much disputed. That is why, based on the rising protagonism of the herpes simplex-1 virus in this pathology, serological studies carried out by various authors, the isolation of this virus in specimens of the epineural tissue in a patient with Bell’s palsy, and our own experience in this field, we decided to start a treatment with acyclovir for this type of patient beginning in November 1988 [10, 11].


Facial Nerve Herpes Simplex Virus Type Herpes Zoster Latent Virus Facial Paralysis 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. L. Navarrete
    • 1
  • P. Quesada
    • 1
  • V. Gimeno
    • 1
  • A. Garcia
    • 1
  • M. Garcia
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of OtorhinolaryngologyAutonomous University of BarcelonaSpain

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