I just wanted to give some input; first off I empathize with all suffering from nerve pain as I have TN and recently had the MVD procedure 5 weeks ago(I am still waiting to be pain free but understand it can take some time).
I went to Allegheny General Hospital where Doctor Janetta is now practicing-he is the premire doctor in this field and I highly recommend anyone looking to surgery for TN call this hospital. Dr. Janetta is working with other surgeons who are wonderful and skilled.
MVD is a procedure where the surgeon makes an incision behind your ear and goes into the site where the trigeminal nerve enters your skull. A skilled surgeon will look for multiple sites where blood vessels could be constricitng the nerve (the constriction causes the nerve lining to wear down and then the nerve begins to misfire and send pain signals out). In my case there was also an artery under the nerve causing constriction. The nerve is not cut during this procedure, blood vessels and arteries are separated but the trigeminal nerve is left intact.
My personal expereince has taught me that neuroligical pain is tremendously painful and frustrating. Many doctors don't know how to deal with you, be proactive in making sure you explore all your options.
There is a group called Trigeminal Neuralgia Association that support people with TN and facial pain (all types).
Originally Posted by saraiderin
The surgery someone was thinking of is called Micro Vascular Decompression Surgery. Dr. Janetta, who has since retired from the University of Pittsburg was the neursurgeon who pioneered the surgery. It is a good treatment for Trigeminal Neuralgia. It is a cranoitomy and has it's risks but, it is the only surgical treatment for Trigeminal Neuralgia that deals with the underlying problem vice just cutting the nerve so the pain signals do not get through.
Trigeminal Nerualgia can cause ear pain but, it is importaint to have a MRI done to rule out all causes first.