2. CN V and CN VII
LESIONS affecting the trigeminal (CN V) and facial (CN VII) nerves often appear similar on initial presentation but proper evaluation will allow differentiation between the two. Disorders of the trigeminal nerve are usually associated with central lesions (apart from mandibular paralysis or ‘dropped jaw’). Disorders of the facial nerve are common in clinical practice and it is important to identify whether these are due to idiopathic facial nerve paralysis, are occurring secondarily to an inner or middle ear lesion or are due to a more central lesion. This article discusses the assessment of the trigeminal and facial nerves and details their common disorders. In the light of the complex components of CN V and CN VII, only the clinically relevant innervations of the two are considered.
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