Temporal Artery Ligation

Q: Dr. Eppley, Interested in advice on upside and the downside of temporal artery ligation. I am a healthy 39 year old male and have these arteries near both temples that constantly bulge and have a pulse in the heat, under stress or when exercising. They look like squiggly worms on the side of my head!

A: Prominent temporal arteries are not rare and their presence becomes more noticeable when the need for increased blood flow occurs. (exercising, heat or just bending over) Temporal artery ligation for cosmetic purposes is done through very small incisions in the temporal hairline and usually one at the end of the visible arteries location. (which is usually somewhere close to the forehead) Always two separate points of ligation are done and occasionally three ligation points are required. These small incisions heal imperceptibly and are not a cosmetic problem. The procedure is done in the office under local anesthesia and there is no real recovery at all. One can resume all activities right after the surgery. the only potential downside to temporal artery ligation is in how well it works. The appearance of the temporal artery can definitely be reduced but not always completely eliminated.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana