Bells Palsy


A disease of unknown origin, possibly related to a virus, affecting the 7th cranial nerve and resulting in unilateral facial muscle weakness. From a layman’s perspective Bells Palsy causes a drooping face and inability to close the eye properly. It is thought that swelling of the nerve as it exits the brain through the stylomastoid foramen results in wallerian degeneration of the nerve and subsequent dysfunction.


Usually the patient consults their general practitioner in the first instance and is prescribed a high dose of oral steroids, reducing over 2-4 weeks. There may or may not be total/partial/nil improvement. After 3 months if no recovery there may be good/mild/nil recovery after 12-24 months. Generally surgical decompression not attempted and no guarantee of success. If patients concerned re aesthetics there are complex surgical procedures of cross facial nerve grafting, hypoglossal/facial nerve grafting, gracilis muscle transfer and other cosmetic procedures but none offering total success. Risks possibly outweigh benefits.

Stem Cells used for injection around stylomastoid foramen

There are sporadic clinical reports of solitary patients undergoing stem cell injection in the area of the parotid gland where the facial nerve traverses through. harvests the stem cells from adipose tissue in the conventional way. We process the fat to increase the number of stem cells. With the patient draped and prepared we initially inject local anaesthetic to the skin and deeper tissues of the parotid gland. With a standard long syringe we angle the path of the needle around the mandibular condyle and tracing the same line as the tympano-mastoid suture deposit the stem cells and stromal vascular fraction comprising 1-2cc's around the facial nerve as it exits the stylomastoid foramen. There is no pain nil bleeding. The carotid artery and internal jugular vein are avoided by careful knowledge of the anatomy.

Summary and its surgeons have undertaken over 100,000 injections using either local anaesthetics, stem cells and/or steroids of craniofacial foramina for varying reasons over 35 years with not 1 death nor significant complication. There is no guarantee that stem cells can restore facial nerve function.

At we pride ourselves on ensuring patients know the team diagnosing and conducting their stem cell therapy. Professor Russell Vickers is the lead specialist, working within a team of specialist surgeons and doctors.

Important questions that patients should ask of any treating clinicians and facility:

  • Are my treating doctors specialist surgeons/doctors and stem cell experts?
  • How many publications and research based studies have they published in peer reviewed journals?
  • Can they augment stem cell therapy with the known benefits of adjunctive therapy? is Europes premier stem cell organisation guided by evidence based medicine and clinical research.

Our founding director, Professor Russell Vickers PhD, MDsc, M Med, MA, FFPM (ANZCA) is an Australian and New Zealand board registered surgeon with over 100 publications, books and thousands of invited lectures and presentations on stem cells, pain, peptide synthesis and biochemistry. Professor Vickers is the leader of a family team of surgeons assisting him including Dr Peter Vickers, MD, FRCS (Edinburgh), FRACDS, Dr Richard Vickers, MD, FRCS (England, Glasgow, Ireland), FRACDS (OMS) and Dr Jessica Vickers, MD, MCOM, BA/BN as co-ordinator.

This medical summary has been written by Professor Vickers and his family team of specialist consultants.

It has been written by medically qualified writers.

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