This is a similar procedure to radiofrequency lesioning, except that a small balloon is passed through a slightly larger needle and inflated for a brief period, one or more times, to damage the nerve.
Risks are much the same as for the other percutaneous procedures.
- No waking up is required in the middle of the procedure. · No co-operation is needed from the patient during the procedure, so it is suitable for confused patients. · Pain relief is immediate, and can sometimes be longer-lasting than for glycerol injections.
- Full general anaesthesia is required (though this may not be a disadvantage in all cases). · It is not possible to target a particular portion of the face, so numbness can be encountered anywhere, just as pain in any part of that side of the face can be addressed by this procedure. · There is a chance of having some initial difficulty with eating as the muscles supplying the jaw can be affected.