My Bell’s palsy is five months old tomorrow. Well that’s not quite true. My permanently open eye was first spotted by an anaesthetist five months ago, an hour before my back surgery to replace my dead L5 bone with cement. She didn’t actually do anything about my eye, and despite me reporting my drooping lip post-op none of the other medics paid it any attention.
Indeed, it took me two weeks to raise the problem with my GP because I didn’t spot that my face had slipped quite dramatically. The GP visit triggered brain cancer investigations which stopped me driving for weeks. Eventually, just as I was being sedated for a lung biopsy, a specialist thrust a prescription for steroids into my hand.
Had those steroids materialised when the first medical professional spotted I had a problem it’s possible that the condition could have passed several weeks ago. But key timescales for correction seem to be four weeks, three months or nine months. Looks like I’m heading for the latter.
My online research into the condition reveals numerous doctors willing to support facial physiotherapy and the like, but no clinical proof that such exercises make the slightest bit of difference.
Another option it seems is Botox. That could straighten my face and may have a benefit for the lisp I’ve acquired with the condition. Perhaps even sort out the tear in my now misaligned right nostril which keeps scabbing and then tearing again.
But Botox won’t fix the condition and it won’t help the right eye blink again. And, to be frank, I don’t really care what I look like. I just want my eye to stop being sore and behave normally.
It’s a curse I could do without!