2004 Volume 7 Issue 1 Pages 35-39
A variety of physiotherapeutic approaches have been tried out during the past 25 years to alleviate the plight of patients with peripheral facial nerve paresis. The objective of this review was to assess the effectiveness of physiotherapy in patients with facial nerve paresis. Trials were identified by computerised searches of biomedical databases, reference lists, and by contacting investigators. Selection criteria were randomised controlled trials of physiotherapy for the improvement of sequelae of facial nerve paresis, comparing the treatment with either another intervention or no intervention. Two reviewers independently assessed the trials using the PEDro scale. Two physiotherapy randomised controlled studies were identified. Interventions used for treatment of patients with facial nerve paresis in the included studies were relaxation, biofeedback and exercise therapy. Neither of the two randomised controlled studies showed scientific evidence of a physiotherapeutic approach in comparison with a control group. Both studies described benefits of the interventions. Further randomised controlled studies are required to determine the effectiveness of physiotherapy in patients with facial nerve paresis.