Medical Surgical Bell’s Palsy and Trigeminal Neuralgia #5

Question

Which information is important for the nurse to give the client who has just been diagnosed with Bell’s palsy about the progression of the condition?

Answers

  1. Usually, this condition lasts for a few weeks to months, resolves on its own, with no residual effects
    • Rationale:

      This answer is correct because usually Bell’s palsy lasts for a few weeks to months, resolves on its own, and there are no residual effects. Bell’s palsy is a temporary facial paralysis which occurs from damage to cranial nerve VII. This cranial nerve controls the muscles responsible for facial expression. It typically presents after a viral infection. Symptoms include facial asymmetry due to facial paralysis to one side of the face, inability to smile or frown, or close eyelids, laxity to facial muscles, earache, and sometimes loss of taste.

  2. Usually, this condition progresses quickly and leads to full body weakness and respiratory collapse
    • Rationale:

      This answer is not correct because a condition that progresses quickly and leads to full body weakness and respiratory collapse includes Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS). Bell’s palsy is a temporary facial paralysis which occurs from damage to cranial nerve VII. This cranial nerve controls the muscles responsible for facial expression. Usually Bell’s palsy lasts for a few weeks to months, resolves on its own with no residual effects.

  3. Usually, this leads to gradually cognitive decline and the need for full-time assistance for personal care
    • Rationale:

      This answer is not correct because dementia leads to gradual cognitive decline and the need for full-time assistance for personal care. Bell’s palsy lasts for a few weeks to months, resolves on its own, and there are no residual effects. Bell’s palsy is a temporary facial paralysis which occurs from damage to cranial nerve VII.

  4. Usually, the client has full cognitive ability despite muscle deterioration to the point of being unable to eat, speak, or breathe
    • Rationale:

      This answer is not correct because in ALS, the client usually has full cognitive ability, despite muscle deterioration to the point of being unable to eat, speak or breath

Overview

Usually Bell’s palsy lasts for a few weeks to months, resolves on its own, and there are no residual effects. Bell’s palsy is a temporary facial paralysis which occurs from damage to cranial nerve VII.

Explanation

Learning Outcomes

Bell’s palsy is a temporary facial paralysis which occurs from damage to cranial nerve VII. This cranial nerve controls the muscles responsible for facial expression. It typically presents after a viral infection. Symptoms include facial asymmetry due to facial paralysis to one side of the face, inability to smile or frown, or close eyelids, laxity to facial muscles, earache, and sometimes loss of taste. Usually Bell’s palsy lasts for a few weeks to months, resolves on its own, and there are no residual effects.

Test Taking Tip

Progression and unique characteristics of neurologic conditions will help differentiate between the various conditions.

Video Rationale