Facial Reanimation Clinic

The Facial Reanimation Clinic at Texas Children’s Hospital, one of the first of its kind for children in the United States, specializes in the comprehensive clinical and surgical care of children with facial weakness, paralysis and asymmetry as a result of a congenital anomaly, traumatic injury or tumor resection. These conditions vary in severity and treatment varies from simple Botox injections to complex, lengthy surgical interventions.

Facial Reanimation Clinic

The care of these patients requires a multidisciplinary team of coordinated subspecialists to ensure these intricate cases are successful. The team includes members from both Plastic Surgery and Physical Therapy.

Our Approach

The patient will be evaluated by a team of Plastic Surgeons and Physical Therapists. Thorough evaluation, including workup tests such as electromyography, will be performed and the severity of each case assessed, addressing each problem in a different way.

Physical therapy will be available for all patients and may be the main treatment for certain patients. A Physical Therapist will evaluate and assess each patient’s facial muscle strength, muscle tone, sensory awareness and postural alignment. A detailed home exercise program will be provided to each patient and follow up therapy will be ordered as needed.

The use of Botox injections will correct minor inconsistencies in facial symmetry in other patients. For more severe cases, surgery might be needed, statically improving symmetry or dynamically reconstructing the smile through microsurgery.

Microsurgery is a highly specialized field of surgery that involves the utilization of high-powered microscopes and instruments that allow surgeons to perform the most intricate and accurate operations on small anatomical structures such as fine blood vessels and nerves. In facial paralysis, a muscle from another part of the body is transferred, nerves and blood vessels are reconnected to regain functionality and animation of the face.