Rhizotomy Recipients

Rhizotomy recipients. I was just wondering if any members might have had the procedure Rhizotomy for TN relief. Trying to find out how they are doing, their side effects and the duration. Would like to hear from you. I am almost a year out. I have the numbness and the itching still. Still I will accept that over the terrible electric shocks I was having. Looking to hear from you. Thanks Gloria37

Hi Gloria,

I had a sensory rhizotomy at the same time as my MVD on February 20th. The numbness has gotten a bit better, for instance now I don’t always feel like I’ve just left the dentist. I do still have noticeable swelling on the operative side of my face; I can also feel that my head is swollen, too. The only odd feeling I’ve had is a slight tingle on my upper lip, but even that isn’t worrisome to me. I’ve noticed that as the day wears on and I get more fatigued I definitely feel more numb and my mouth on the right side doesn’t want to ‘work’ right.

Thanks for your response. It was helpful. My rhizotomy was done last July and I still have the itching. My concern now is that l’ve had a couple of nerve shocks over the last three weeks. When it was done I was told it may last a few years. I guess no one really knows. I am hoping you will soon be back to normal and feeling great again. Thanks Gloria37

I have been given the option for rhizotomy. How was your done and can you tell me more about the numbness (areas) and itching. I am concerned about those side effects, as my tolerance for anything is practically zilch after dealing with TN for 23 years (2 MVDs and one Gamma knife) and constant pain for the last 9 years after Gamma Knife failed. Thank for any info.

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I am sorry you have to go through this again but I guess we do what we have to do for relief from TN. Yes there are side effects from the rhizotomy but considering the pain I go for the side effects. The itching and the numbness will eventually get better to a point. Mine is almost a year now and I still experience them. However, my pain has returned. I suppose the nerve block has weakened. As it persists,I am contacting my neurosurgeon and may have to repeat the rhizotomy. Since my problem stems from an inoperable brain tumor my choices seem to be limited. You’d think they would have found some kink of cure by now huh? Good luck to you, Gloria37

Hello -

Thanks for getting back to me, my computer has been down for a while, so I am now just able to respond.

What type of rhizotomy did you have? Was it of the ganglion or was it internal right at the nerve root, like an MVD. I am really concerned about numbness. Can you describe where your numbness is? Is it like after you’ve had Novocain and everything feels distorted? My tolerance for anything is down to zilch since I have been dealing with almost constant pain for nearly 10 years now…although I used to get decent relief until they cut my meds down. Now it is out of control. I go to see pain management July 7th, but I am not very hopeful based on previous experience with pain management before I had a laminectomy years ago. Maybe they’re more helpful now. Thanks for any info.


Hello Not-Again, in reply to your questions, my rhizotomy was done on the ganglion. It was an RF rhizotomy. The numbness is something like Novocain results. You have difficulty using that side for a while but it does get better. My procedure was done almost a year ago. I am now feeling mild shocks (infrequently) returning in my cheeks. I was hoping it would last for years. Because mine is caused by an inoperable brain stem tumor, I think my only hope is to repeat the rhizotomy. It seems you have had several procedures done and I pray you’ll find some relief. Good luck on your next appointment. Gloria37