Facial nerve palsy: Analysis of cases reported in children in a suburban hospital in Nigeria

  • MO Folayan
  • RI Arobieke
  • E Eziyi
  • EO Oyetola
  • J Elusiyan
Keywords: Children, facial nerve, malaria, mumps, Nigeria, palsy


Aim: The study describes the epidemiology, treatment, and treatment outcomes of the 10 cases of facial nerve palsy seen in children managed at the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospitals Complex, Ile‑Ife over a 10 year period. It also compares findings with report from developed countries.
Methodology: This was a retrospective cohort review of pediatric cases of facial nerve palsy encountered in all the clinics run by specialists in the above named hospital. A diagnosis of facial palsy was based on International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification codes. Information retrieved from the case note included sex, age, number of days with lesion prior to presentation in the clinic, diagnosis, treatment, treatment outcome, and referral clinic.
Findings: Only 10 cases of facial nerve palsy were diagnosed in the institution during the study period. Prevalence of facial nerve palsy in this hospital was 0.01%. The lesion more commonly affected males and the right side of the face. All cases were associated with infections: Mainly mumps (70% of cases). Case management include the use of steroids and eye pads for cases that presented within 7 days; and steroids, eye pad, and physical therapy for cases that presented later. All cases of facial nerve palsy associated with mumps and malaria infection fully recovered. The two cases of facial nerve palsy associated with otitis media only partially recovered.
Conclusion: Facial nerve palsy in pediatric patients is more commonly associated with mumps in the study environment. Successes are recorded with steroid therapy.

Key words: Children, facial nerve, malaria, mumps, Nigeria, palsy


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eISSN: 1119-3077