Last reviewed 01/2018

Exact cause of trigeminal neuralgia remains unclear (1)

  • most cases are considered idiopathic (1)
  • many are associated with demyelination of the  trigeminal nerve. This can be due to
    • vascular compression of the nerve root by aberrant or tortuous vessels
    • multiple sclerosis or tumours affecting the nerve root. (1)

Several other causes have been described as well in which demyelination may also be an underlying cause e.g. - amyloid infiltration, arteriovenous malformations, bony compression, and small infarcts in the pons and medulla (1).