Facial Paralysis Expert, Babak Azizzadeh, MD, FACS, Responds to Swiss Man’s Lead Poisoning From Self-Administered Bell’s Palsy Pills

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Director of the Facial Paralysis Institute in Beverly Hills, Dr. Babak Azizzadeh, explains the importance of seeking treatment from an expert after a man with Bell’s Palsy gets lead poisoning from unregulated alternative medicine.

Babak Azizzadeh MD
The most important treatment objective for individuals with facial paralysis is prevention of unwanted eye complications, reconstruction of facial movement, restoration of a dynamic smile, and improvement of facial aesthetics.

Facial Paralysis expert, Dr. Babak Azizzadeh, commented today about a Bell’s Palsy case in Switzerland. In attempt to treat his Bell’s Palsy, a Swiss man, originally from Bhutan, ingested pills that he thought consumed the hair of a dead Bhutanese priest. As a result, he suffered from lead poisoning and was admitted to the emergency room in Geneva in 2011. After doctors could not determine the source of his severe abdominal pain and vomiting, the man admitted to taking unmarked pellets every day for three to four months to treat his Bell’s palsy.

“First and foremost the patient needs to be evaluated by a medical professional to ensure that they are not suffering from a stroke or have a tumor that’s causing compression or destruction of the nerve,” Dr. Azizzadeh said. “If someone is diagnosed with acute (immediate) Bell's palsy, he needs to be treated immediately with high dose steroids and antiviral medications under the supervision of a physician.”

Bell’s palsy is a facial nerve disorder that causes a sudden onset of partial facial paralysis. Bell’s palsy comes with no warning signs and the paralysis sets in immediately at the onset. It’s crucial that those who suffer from Bell’s Palsy seek treatment from an expert and do not try at-home techniques that could have devastating consequences

“The most important treatment objective for individuals with facial paralysis is prevention of unwanted eye complications, reconstruction of facial movement, restoration of a dynamic smile, and improvement of facial aesthetics,” Dr. Azizzadeh explained.

At the Institute for Facial Paralysis, Dr. Azizzadeh and his team of facial plastic surgeons, otolaryngologists, neuro-otologists, neurosurgeons, head & neck surgeons, ophthalmologists, and physical therapists utilize a systematic approach to reach those objectives. Each patient will be initially consulted by Dr. Azizzadeh who will then utilize different members of the team to obtain the best possible outcome.

“A true multidisciplinary approach is necessary in the treatment of facial paralysis,” Dr. Azizzadeh stated. “A thorough neurologic examination and possible imaging studies may be required depending on the history of the patient.”

Since his extensive and prestigious training at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Azizzadeh has helped hundreds of people with varying degrees of facial paralysis. Dr. Azizzadeh is the director of the Facial Paralysis Institute and one of the leading figures in the field of Facial Nerve Paralysis. Dr. Azizzadeh has been recognized for his work on several occasions, and has appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show and countless other media outlets.

Dr. Azizzadeh is trained in Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, as well as Head & Neck Surgery, giving him a distinctive insight into facial nerve function and facial aesthetics. Dr. Azizzadeh also has extensive training in microsurgical facial reconstruction, which is often required for the treatment of people who are born with facial paralysis.

For more information, contact the Facial Paralysis Institute at (310) 657-2203.

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