Department of Otolaryngology

Facial Paralysis Center

For more than 20 years, experts at the UPMC Facial Paralysis Center have diagnosed and treated many people suffering from facial nerve disorders.

As one of the main centers of facial paralysis expertise in the world, we often provide answers and second opinions for patients who feel they've run out of options. We also teach other doctors about the symptoms and diagnosis of facial nerve disorders.

Common facial nerve disorders we treat include:

  • Hemi-facial spasms
  • Bell's palsy
  • Synkinesis

Learn more about these treatments.

Research on Facial Paralysis

Dr. Schaitkin and his team are dedicated to furthering research and education on facial paralysis. Many of his patients agree to be a part of his research to help further the field. Dr. Schaitkin often publishes his research findings on the diagnosis and prognosis of facial nerve disorders and electrical testing.

Facial Paralysis Symptoms and Diagnosis

Many people suffering from facial nerve disorders do not realize that UPMC’s Facial Paralysis Center might be able to help. Often, people think there aren't any treatments for their facial paralysis symptoms and give up. At the Facial Paralysis Center, we've treated patients from all over the world — many of whom thought they had no other options until they came to UPMC.

Symptoms of Facial Paralysis

Facial nerves control the muscles in the face. Symptoms you might not see as serious, but that could be a sign of a facial nerve disorder, include:

  • Trouble smiling
  • Problems closing the eyes
  • Difficulty wrinkling the nose or moving the eyebrows
  • Inability or strain moving other parts of the face
  • Unwanted facial movements

Diagnosing Facial Nerve Disorders

Some people who come to the center for a consult, believe they know their diagnosis and just want treatment.

Facial nerve disorders are not as common as other health issues, like high blood pressure or diabetes. A general medical doctor may not see many patients who suffer from these disorders and lack experience making a proper diagnosis.

The experts at UPMC’s Facial Paralysis Center have evaluated more than 4000 patients with facial paralysis.