dr leigh show-header

Do You Know the Difference Between Bell's Palsy and Stroke?

Summary: Bell's Palsy looks close to a stroke in symptoms, but is very different. Know the symptoms so you can get appropriate care.
Air Date: 8/30/13
Duration: 10
Host: Dr. Leigh Vinocur, MD
Guest Bio: Dr. Jahan Fahimi, MD
Dr. Jahan Fahimi is an emergency physician in San Francisco. He splits his clinical time between Highland Hospital in Oakland, CA where he did my residency training and research fellowship, and University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Fahimi’s research interests relate to emergency health care utilization patterns and practices, and he is currently pursuing a PhD in Epidemiology from University of California, Berkeley School of Public Health.
Do You Know the Difference Between Bell's Palsy and Stroke?
Bell's Palsy is an inflammatory condition that affects a specific facial nerve, and causes partial or complete paralysis of the face. The causes are often unknown, but could be due to a virus or even complications from Lyme disease.

The symptoms of Bell's Palsy actually look very close to that of stroke. But, in fact, they are very different health concerns. These differences are important to know, so that when you experience either one or the other, you can obtain appropriate care.

One significant difference is that while Bell's affects primarily the face, a stroke usually shows weakness in other areas of the body - even if the stroke is realized in facial paralysis.

Also, while most stroke victims are aged 45 and over, Bell's Palsy can affect you at any age.

Special guest, Dr. Jahan Fahimi, joins Dr. Leigh to explain all of the differences between the two conditions, as well as share information as to what you should do if you are experiencing symptoms.