CyberKnife® for Trigeminal Neuralgia

In the treatment of trigeminal neuralgia (TN), pain management with medication is traditionally the first line of defense. While this approach can reduce the effects of the disorder, some patients may require or request additional treatment due to advanced pain or a desire to avoid side effects of current medication. In these cases, the patient may be a candidate for CyberKnife treatment.

CyberKnife is a non-invasive option for TN. High-dose radiation is accurately delivered by a linear accelerator mounted on a highly maneuverable robotic arm. The procedure is painless and typically performed in one outpatient treatment session. Unlike other stereotactic radiosurgery treatments, CyberKnife does not use a rigid metal frame secured to the patient’s head with screws. Instead, TN patients wear a comfortable mesh face mask. The CyberKnife delivers hundreds of highly concentrated and incredibly precise beams of radiation targeted directly to the trigeminal sensory nerve root, interrupting the transmission of pain signals to the brain.


Priscilla Raymond is someone who is all too familiar with the extreme pain caused by trigeminal neuralgia. Raymond’s journey when facial pain caused her to visit her primary care physician. Her PCP originally thought it was a sinus infection, but after ruling that out, suggested that she make an appointment with a dentist. Because of the type of pain, and the area that it was in, her dentist believed that she had trigeminal neuralgia. Thanks to CyberKnife Priscilla was able to drop her pain level was down in just a few days.


The patient is a 62 year old female with left-sided facial pain for more than four years. The pain originates at the left upper lip and radiates back toward the left ear. She view describes it as intense and shock-like with a pain scale rating of 10 out of 10. The pain is initiated and exacerbated by eating, talking and brushing her teeth or by touch. After an initial evaluation by her dentist with no dental issues identified, her primary care physician prescribed pain medication gradually increasing the dose over time. Although she initially responded to medications, she became refractory over time.

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