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Those unfortunate people who suffer from permanent partial facial paralysis have great difficulty finding surgeons who can offer corrective operations. Improving their function is a most delicate procedure. Great care must be exercised to avoid injuring nerves and muscles which are still operating, although in a greatly diminished state. The pathogenesis must be understood before attempting any corrective procedure. Adequate time must elapse from the moment of injury to surgical intervention, thus allowing for maximal nerve and muscle regeneration. This paper describes techniques that could improve facial movements. The most frequently used procedure is shortening of the levator and/or the zygomatic muscles that are partially atrophied. It must be understood that total reanimation is impossible as of this time.

(C)1986American Society of Plastic Surgeons