AAO-HNSF Clinical Practice Guideline: Bell's Palsy

November 4, 2013 - 2:00pm

ALEXANDRIA, VA — A multidisciplinary clinical practice guideline to improve the accurate and efficient diagnosis and treatment of Bell’s palsy was published Monday in the journal Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery. The guideline is intended for clinicians in any setting who are likely to diagnose and manage patients with Bell’s palsy, the most common single nerve disorder, usually associated with facial paralysis. 

“The primary purpose of this guideline is to improve the accuracy of diagnosis for Bell’s palsy, to improve the quality of care and outcomes for patients with Bell’s palsy, and to decrease harmful variations in the evaluation and management of Bell’s palsy,” said Reginald F. Baugh, MD, Chair of the Bell's palsy Guideline Panel.

Bell’s palsy affects both men and women across a wide range of ages. The condition is characterized by facial paralysis and distortions that can appear as facial sagging, immobility, or contraction on the affected side. The condition occurs when the facial nerve is damaged by swelling or pressure, but the exact cause of Bell’s palsy is unknown. 

The clinical guideline for Bell’s palsy was created by a panel that included otolaryngology—head and neck surgeons, neurologists, facial plastic and reconstructive surgeons, neurotologists, otologists, emergency medicine and primary care professionals, nurses and physician assistants, and consumer advocates.  

Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery is the official scientific journal of the American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF). The guideline was published as a supplement to the journal’s November edition.

The guideline’s authors are: Reginald F. Baugh, MD (Chair); Gregory Basura, MD, PhD (Assistant Chair); Lisa Ishii, MD, MHS (Assistant Chair); Seth R. Schwartz, MD, MPH (Methodologist); Caitlin Murray Drumheller; Rebecca Burkholder, JD; Nathan A. Deckard, MD; Cindy Dawson, MSN, RN; Colin Driscoll, MD; M. Boyd Gillespie, MD, MSc; Richard K. Gurgel, MD; John Halperin, MD; Ayesha N. Khalid, MD; Kaparaboyna Ashok Kumar, MD, FRCS; Alan Micco, MD; Debra Munsell, DHSc, PA-C; Steven Rosenbaum, MD; and William Vaughan.
 
Members of the media who wish to obtain a copy of the guideline or request an interview should contact: Lindsey Walter at 1-703-535-3762, or newsroom@entnet.org.

About the AAO-HNS
 
The American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery, one of the oldest medical associations in the nation, represents about 12,000 physicians and allied health professionals who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the ears, nose, throat, and related structures of the head and neck. The Academy serves its members by facilitating the advancement of the science and art of medicine related to otolaryngology and by representing the specialty in governmental and socioeconomic issues. The organization's vision: "Empowering otolaryngologist-head and neck surgeons to deliver the best patient care."

Press Contact
Lindsey Walter, Senior Manager
Media and Public Relations
newsroom@entnet.org