Mr Prakash Girnar, was transferred to the Kutch division as Branch Manager of Dena Bank in 2001. A few days after he started his duties there, he noticed that his left eye was blinking automatically, especially during meetings and deadlines. He concluded that the stress of the job was the cause of the twitching. Over a period of a month it slowly progressed to involuntary twitching of the cheek, lips and the left side of the face. He also noticed that such episodes were followed by left sided headache. Soon he realized that this was no stress-related problem. He consulted many physicians and neurologists, most said that operation was not a treatment.They prescribed pain-killers and anti-anxiety medication and some even prescribed anti-convulsants. The result was that he began to feel sleepy during the day, and occasionally lost balance; but the blinking/winking/twitching did not g Micro-Vascular Decompression o away. In fact, over a period of a year, it only increased both in duration and frequency of the episodes.
In the meanwhile, his clients, especially female were annoyed at his ‘gestures’. He had to wear goggles even while inside the office, so his eyes could not be seen. Outside the bank, his social interaction decreased, to the extent of his remaining indoors and not accompanying his family for any social functions. He slowly became a recluse, and shunned human interaction because of embarrassment. He again visited famous hospitals and doctors in Mumbai and Gujarat, but to no avail.
He was eventually referred to Dr Jayadev Panchawagh, who he was told was an authority in this field. He visited our Hemifacial spasm centre in 2009. After undergoing an MRI to rule out other problems, he was counseled about the operation, its risks, benefits, course of hospital stay, what to expect etc. He also saw videos of the surgery and patient interviews. He was given phone numbers of people who had gone through a similar frustrating and depressing period, and who were back to their normal lives now. After he spoke to a couple of people, he had no doubt left in his mind about getting operated.
The spasms decreased considerably immediately after operation, and went away completely over the next week or so. Initially in the post-operative period, he was apprehensive that it would return, and spent hours waiting for the twitches to appear. It took him a few days to finally believe that they had actually disappeared for good and that he was as normal as could be! It is now many years after the operation( since 2009), and he is happy that he wears goggles only when he is out in the sun!!Click here to watch video of Mr Prakash Girnar.2.
Mr Mohan Yadav was an employee at Kirloskar factory. In 2005, he noticed that the right side of his face was being pulled to one side and his eyes winked automtically. He avoided going to get-togethers and parties, and eventually his vision became a problem because of the constant eye-blinking. Working with heavy machinery and driving became not only difficult but dangerous as well. He visited many doctors who advised him to ignore his problem and get on with life. When his quality of life worsened, and his family life began getting affected because of social avoidance, he went to a psychiatrist to consider taking anti-depressants.
In 2010, he was referred to Dr Jayadev Panchwagh by a relative who had undergone a removal of brain tumour by him. The appointment was fixed promptly by the team co-ordinator, and Dr Panchawagh spoke to him at length about his problem and dispelled all fears about the surgery and its outcome. He was made aware of the inherent risks in the operation, after all it was a major brain surgery. But he felt reassured and confident after talking to the team members, and decided to get operated the very next week. He was immediately relieved of his problems after the operation, and he felt like a changed man! He went off all medication and was back to work after a fortnight and hasn’t looked back since.
If you want to hear a patient’s story in their own words, please click here: