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Pediatric facial nerve palsy (FNP) can result from a variety of etiologies including
Lyme disease, varicella, primary gingivostomatitis, herpes zoster oticus (Ramsay Hunt syndrome), coxsackievirus, trauma, otitis media, HIV, diseases causing tumors or demyelinations, compressions, and possibly Epstein Barr virus.
Lyme disease has been implicated as the cause of over 50% of the FNPs in children. The paralysis of the facial nerve disturbs motor function to the muscles of facial expression and results in a flaccid appearance of the face (unilateral or bilateral). This case report derails undiagnosed
Lyme disease presenting as a facial palsy in a 6 year, 5 month-old white female. The palsy was recognized and consultation with the child’s physician prompted definitive diagnosis and treatment. A review of the literature and the implications of facial nerve palsy are discussed.