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Gen Dent. 2007 Nov-Dec;55(6):532-6.

Transitory paresis of the lateral pterygoid muscle during a posterior superior alveolar nerve block--a case report.

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Department of General Dentistry, Creighton University Medical Center, School of Dentistry, Omaha, Nebraska, USA.


The posterior superior alveolar nerve (PSAN) is a major sensory branch of the maxillary division of the trigeminal nerve. A PSAN block is a dental nerve block used for profound anesthesia of the maxillary molars. Complications arising from the PSAN block include hematoma formation, transient diplopia, blurred vision, and temporary blindness. This article presents a case of temporary paresis in the lateral pterygoid muscle following a PSAN block that utilized a 27-gauge long needle. The anatomical parameters and pathogenesis of such a complication are reviewed.

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