In Brief: Getting well after Bell's

In Brief

Getting well after Bell's

Published: January, 2008

Bell's palsy — the very name stirs up some dread. Palsy is another term for paralysis, and Bell's refers to Sir Charles Bell, the 19th-century Scottish anatomist who gave the first scientific description of the condition. Another name for Bell's palsy is facial paralysis — certainly plainer but no more comforting.

Bell's palsy almost always affects just one side of the face. The mouth droops, and the eye on the affected side won't close. Understandably, people worry that they've had a stroke. The disfigurement, although usually temporary, can be upsetting.

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