A number of conditions may be associated with the onset of trigeminal neuralgia.

Pathogenic mechanisms include:

(1) demyelination

(2) post-infectious

(3) neurovascular compression or traction

(4) genetic


Conditions associated with trigeminal neuralgia include:

(1) multiple sclerosis (MS)

(2) bony compression along course of CN V

(3) compression in Meckel cave

(4) mass lesion (tumor or cyst) along course of CN V

(5) mass lesion (tumor or cyst) at the cerebellopontine angle

(6) arteriovenous malformation or vascular anomaly along course of CN V

(7) arterial dissection

(8) small infarcts of medulla and pons

(9) amyloid infiltration

(10) fibrosis around nerve root

(11) compression by a microsurgical aneurysm clip

(12) post-herpetic

(13) post-traumatic or post-surgical

(14) neurosarcoidosis

(15) sphenoid sinusitis

(16) familial

(17) anaplasmosis

(18) systemic sclerosis


A small percent of patients may have no identified cause (idiopathic).

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