Trigeminal Neuralgia with COVID-19 Virus

January 2022: As promised, we present a review of the current literature related to Trigeminal Neuralgia and the COVID-19 virus. It's important that TN patients are aware of, and follow the current science.

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Dr. McLaughlin

I promised you all that I would review the literature looking at the Covid vaccine and neurological complications related to it, as well as the Covid virus and neurological complications related to it.

This is the first set of review articles I've been through. This is an ongoing process. There are papers coming out every day regarding this, but these are three quality papers that I came upon, one of which talks about… (again this is the virus infecting the nervous system and its different effects on the nervous system). We know that the virus can cause seizures; it can cause Guillain-Barre syndrome, viral encephalitis, meningoencephalitis.

These are all infections in the central nervous system; as well as stroke or cerebral vascular disease and has some effect in the clotting cascade and therefore it can cause clogging of blood vessels and therefore strokes in the brain and also on a cellular level. Remember the nerves are fed by little tiny vessels called the vasa nervorum and those little tiny vessels also can get clogged…, irritated…, somehow damaged by the virus which can cause strokes within nerves themselves. So we are seeing reports of all of these complications from the virus infection.

I do see a study here out of Spain that reports an event of new onset Trigeminal Neuralgia after the virus, and another one that talks about the infection of the nervous system through the transmission through the olfactory epithelium. So the olfactory nerve…, this sense of smell nerve, is how this virus infects us and how it gets into our nervous system.

There are a number of neurological manifestations related to the Covid virus. Very, very important for you to get your vaccine. It will minimize this. It will decrease the neurological complications and decrease your chances of being hospitalized or having any type of respiratory or neurological injury.

That's my summary on the Covid virus and its relationship to the nervous system. Next up will be the Covid vaccine and its relationship to the nervous system.

More about Trigeminal Neuralgia

Princeton Brain & Spine neurosurgeon Mark R. McLaughlin, MD, FACS, FAANS trained with Peter Jannetta, M.D., the "father" of modern microvascular decompression surgery for trigeminal neuralgia, hemifacial spasm, glossopharyngeal neuralgia, and other cranial nerve rhizopathies. Dr. McLaughlin worked closely with Dr. Jannetta in the ongoing research, and was the lead author of the paper 

"Microvascular decompression of cranial nerves: lessons learned after 4400 operations" published in the Journal of Neurosurgery in January 1999. On PUBMED

He was also co-author with Drs Jannetta and Casey of "Technique of Microvascular Decompression: A Technical Note"

Other TN resources include:

Trigeminal Neuralgia Factsheet at NIH

Trigeminal Neuralgia Overview at American Association of Neurological Surgeons

Rare Disease Database at National Organization for Rare Disorders

Covid-19 Resources

The Lancet is the world's oldest peer-reviewed medical journal. Their

The Lancet Covid-19 Resources page is trustworthy and contains current research.

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