Microvascular decompression is a surgical procedure that takes pressure off a compressed cranial nerve.
Microvascular decompression is used to treat a range of conditions, such as:
- Trigerminal neuralgia
- Glossopharyngeal neuralgia
- Hemifacial spasm
The patient is under general anaesthetic. A craniotomy is performed but surgically opening the skull and then the surgeon exposes the nerve at the base of the brainstem. A small sponge is positioned between the compressing vessel and the nerve. In some cases if a vein is causing compression it is cauterised and moved away.