top of page
  • Writer's pictureJean-Paul Abboud, MD, PhD

What is Hemifacial Spasm?

Updated: Apr 9, 2020

Hemifacial spasm is a disorder of the nervous system in which the eyelid and facial muscles on one side of the face frequently twitch or contract involuntarily. Patients do not have control over these spasms. The spasms are usually not painful and they very often continue even during sleep.


Hemifacial spasm is most often caused by a blood vessel compressing the facial nerve, but it may be caused by a facial nerve injury or a tumor, or it may have no apparent cause. For this reason, it is necessary to obtain MRI imaging of the head and the facial nerve prior to treatment.


Treatment includes botulinum toxin (e.g., Botox, Xeomin) injections into the eyelid and facial muscles, medications for early and mild spasms, and surgical decompression in certain cases.

This video demonstrates left hemifacial spasms in a patient prior to treatment with botulinum toxin injections.

Other facial dystonias that involve involuntary twitching of the eyelid include benign essential blepharospasms and Meige Syndrome.

For more information about hemifacial spasms, eyelid twitching (blepharospams), and other facial dystonias, or to schedule a consultation, call us at 858.356.2647


These are images of actual patients of Dr. Jean-Paul Abboud. They are shown for informational purposes only and are provided with written patient consent for use on this website. Please do not copy or distribute images/videos. Each individual’s treatment and/or results will vary, and no guarantee is stated or implied by any photo or statement used on this website.

23,117 views0 comments


bottom of page