The Jannetta Procedure is effective in the treatment of several challenging medical conditions in which blood vessels surrounding the base of the brain put pressure on cranial nerves and/or on the brain stem itself.
Trigeminal neuralgia (tic douloureaux)
A nerve condition affecting half the face. In Type 1, severe intolerable jabbing pain starts and stops suddenly. In Type 2, there is constant focal facial pain that is not due to dental infection. It is often confused with TMJ (temporomandibular joint disorder). Nearly 90% of patients experience complete relief with the Jannetta Procedure.
A muscular disorder producing twitching of one side of the face, usually starting in the eye and gradually progressing downward. Typically, severe sustained episodes of eye closing and grimacing follow. In some patients, the condition may start in the cheek and progress up the face.
Meniere’s Disease, disabling vertigo, and tinnitus
Disorders of the nerve that controls hearing and balance. Meniere’s is an inner ear condition affecting balance and hearing; vertigo produces a severe spinning sensation or disequilibrium (dizziness), frequently with nausea and vomiting; and tinnitus is an annoying, sometimes unbearably loud, ringing in the ears, with hearing loss.
A nerve syndrome causing intolerable one-sided jabbing or constant pain in the throat, back of the tongue or ear. The pain, which is similar to that from trigeminal neuralgia, is precipitated or worsened by swallowing.
The most common type of high blood pressure (95% of occurrences). It is caused by arteries pulsating against the left side of the lower brain stem and the nerve that controls the left side of the heart (the pump).
At the Foundation, innovative applications of
the Jannetta Procedure are being carefully studied in research and
clinical trials. Results to date are promising for several conditions. Parkinson’s Disease
A disorder that produces uncontrolled muscle movements in various parts
of the body. It appears that the great majority of cases are caused by
the small posterior cerebral artery pushing into the upper brainstem
Please see: “Parkinson’s disease: an inquiry into the etiology and treatment”
Neurol Int. 2011 July 5; 3(2): e7 Published online 2011 August 30. PMCID: PMC3207233
Peter J. Jannetta, Donald M. Whiting, Lynn H. Fletcher, Joseph K. Hobbs,
Jon Brillman, Matthew Quigley, Melanie Fukui, and Robert Williams http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3207233/
Type 2 diabetes
“Adult” diabetes, the common type (95% of diabetes),
characterized by high levels of blood sugar. It is caused by arteries
pulsating against the right lower brain stem and the nerve that controls
the pancreas and causes arterial deterioration. Treatment with The
Jannetta Procedure can potentially avoid up to $850,000 lifetime medical
Facial paralysis resulting from nerve damage. Most one-sided facial
palsy is caused by an arterial loop around the base of the brain
shifting its position and stretching the facial nerve (nerve VII). It is
often accompanied by mild hearing and balance problems because that
nerve (VIII) is closely adjacent to nerve VII.
Irregular heartbeat, which is common and can be dangerous. It may be
caused by small arteries or veins pulsating into the nerve (right or
left vagus) controlling the heart. (Peer-reviewed professional journal
article in preparation.)
Obstructive sleep apnea
A debilitating disease that causes breathing during sleep to stop
temporarily. It is caused by vascular compression of the nerves
controlling the throat, producing paralysis and obstruction of the
airway while asleep. It also produces severe snoring. (Peer-reviewed
professional journal article to be published.)
What Patients Say
“I’m so fortunate to have had you as my surgeon. You saved my life and I’ll never forget it.” - J.C., Florida "I'm still going great. Not a day goes by that I don't count my blessings because of you." - V.A., PennsylvaniaDr. Jannetta is one of the few physicians to be the sole subject of a book—“Working in a Very Small Place: The Making of a Neurosurgeon” by Mark L. Shelton.