Dudley MP Ian Austin is helping to raise awareness of Trigeminal Neuralgia (TN), a condition where any facial movement such as chewing or talking, for example, or even light touch to the face can bring on agonising pain.
TN is a relatively rare condition, thought to affect an estimated 60,000+ people in the UK. It leaves sufferers not able to do simple things like chatting, eating, drinking, laughing without fear of being in pain.
Austin attended an event at the House of Commons after a Dudley resident, who suffers from TN, got in touch asking for his support. Austin listened to world-renowned neurosurgeon Dr Kenneth Casey talk about the condition and the debilitating effect it can have on sufferers.
Although medication and some surgical procedures can bring relief, there is currently no known cure for the condition which causes pain attacks that are like 40,000-volt electric shocks. The drugs used to treat TN can, for many, cause brain-numbing side effects that patients find difficult to tolerate too.
It is hoped that by raising awareness of the condition, its financial costs in terms of misdiagnosis, incorrect treatment, lost working time and disruptions to family stability, more can be done to relieve suffering and the life-changing consequences of this debilitating condition.
Ian Austin said:
“When a Dudley resident got in touch about TN I was really shocked about the affects this rare condition can have on sufferers.
“I wanted to go along to the event in Parliament and show my support, and hope I could help raise awareness of TN so that more can be done to help those living with it.
“This is how politics should work – when a constituent gets in touch about an issue I’ll speak up for them in Parliament and try to make a difference for them.”