Will Botox Help With My Jaw Muscle Spasms?
Q: Dr. Eppley, I have had a problem since I was in 10 years old. I have visited many doctors but none have had a proper remedy. Ever since I have started feeling it, I am been taking medicines. And right now I am frustrated with taking medicines. The problem is that my face clamps down suddenly on my right upper and lower jaw while I am talking, eating, brushing or even when I am not doing anything. I have visited many neurologists and finally visited orthopedic surgeons but nothing works. I was just going through some internet sites and visited yours and would be very kind if you could help me out. Thank you.
A: While I don’t have the insights that would be provided by an actual examination or knowing what treatments you have had, your description sounds like a condition known as hemifacial spasm. This is caused by involuntary contractions of the muscles of mastication, the temporalis and masseter muscles. Since you have visited neurologists I will assume that causes of intracranial pathology (brain tumors, vascular lesions) has been excluded. I would recommend a series of Botox injections into those muscles which exhibit spasm. Botox is very effective for masseteric spasm in the treatment of bruxism and myofascial pain disorders.
Dr. Barry Eppley