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Corticosteroids for Bell's palsy (idiopathic facial paralysis)

Overview of attention for article published in Cochrane database of systematic reviews, September 1996
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 5% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (96th percentile)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (88th percentile)

Mentioned by

2 news outlets
2 blogs
39 tweeters
1 Wikipedia page
1 Google+ user

Readers on

20 Mendeley
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Corticosteroids for Bell's palsy (idiopathic facial paralysis)
Published in
Cochrane database of systematic reviews, September 1996
DOI 10.1002/14651858.cd001942.pub5
Pubmed ID

Vishnu B Madhok, Ildiko Gagyor, Fergus Daly, Dhruvashree Somasundara, Michael Sullivan, Fiona Gammie, Frank Sullivan, Madhok, Vishnu B, Gagyor, Ildiko, Daly, Fergus, Somasundara, Dhruvashree, Sullivan, Michael, Gammie, Fiona, Sullivan, Frank


Inflammation and oedema of the facial nerve are implicated in causing Bell's palsy. Corticosteroids have a potent anti-inflammatory action that should minimise nerve damage. This is an update of a review first published in 2002 and last updated in 2010. To determine the effectiveness and safety of corticosteroid therapy in people with Bell's palsy. On 4 March 2016, we searched the Cochrane Neuromuscular Specialised Register, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), MEDLINE, EMBASE and LILACS. We reviewed the bibliographies of the randomised trials and contacted known experts in the field to identify additional published or unpublished trials. We also searched clinical trials registries for ongoing trials. Randomised trials and quasi-randomised trials comparing different routes of administration and dosage schemes of corticosteroid or adrenocorticotrophic hormone therapy versus a control group receiving no therapy considered effective for this condition, unless the same therapy was given in a similar way to the experimental group. We used standard Cochrane methodology. The main outcome of interest was incomplete recovery of facial motor function (i.e. residual facial weakness). Secondary outcomes were cosmetically disabling persistent sequelae, development of motor synkinesis or autonomic dysfunction (i.e. hemifacial spasm, crocodile tears) and adverse effects of corticosteroid therapy manifested during follow-up. We identified seven trials, with 895 evaluable participants for this review. All provided data suitable for the primary outcome meta-analysis. One of the trials was new since the last version of this Cochrane systematic review. Risk of bias in the older, smaller studies included some unclear- or high-risk assessments, whereas we deemed the larger studies at low risk of bias. Overall, 79/452 (17%) participants allocated to corticosteroids had incomplete recovery of facial motor function six months or more after randomisation; significantly fewer than the 125/447 (28%) in the control group (risk ratio (RR) 0.63, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.50 to 0.80, seven trials, n = 895). The number of people who need to be treated with corticosteroids to avoid one incomplete recovery was 10 (95% CI 6 to 20). The reduction in the proportion of participants with cosmetically disabling sequelae six months after randomisation was very similar in the corticosteroid and placebo groups (RR 0.96, 95% CI 0.40 to 2.29, two trials, n = 75, low-quality evidence). However, there was a significant reduction in motor synkinesis during follow-up in participants receiving corticosteroids (RR 0.64, 95% CI 0.45 to 0.91, three trials, n = 485, moderate-quality evidence). Three studies explicitly recorded the absence of adverse effects attributable to corticosteroids. One trial reported that three participants receiving prednisolone had temporary sleep disturbances and two trials gave a detailed account of adverse effects occurring in 93 participants, all non-serious; the combined analysis of data from these three trials found no significant difference in adverse effect rates between people receiving corticosteroids and people receiving placebo (RR 1.04, 95% CI 0.71 to 1.51, n = 715). The available moderate- to high-quality evidence from randomised controlled trials showed significant benefit from treating Bell's palsy with corticosteroids.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 39 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 20 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Spain 1 5%
Germany 1 5%
Unknown 18 90%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Bachelor 4 20%
Student > Doctoral Student 4 20%
Student > Master 3 15%
Other 2 10%
Student > Postgraduate 2 10%
Other 5 25%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 16 80%
Arts and Humanities 1 5%
Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutical Science 1 5%
Unspecified 1 5%
Nursing and Health Professions 1 5%
Other 0 0%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 59. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 02 October 2017.
All research outputs
of 11,346,364 outputs
Outputs from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
of 9,069 outputs
Outputs of similar age
of 265,754 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
of 152 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 11,346,364 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 98th percentile: it's in the top 5% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 9,069 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 20.2. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 93% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 265,754 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 96% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 152 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has done well, scoring higher than 88% of its contemporaries.