Background: Microvascular decompression (MVD) is a non-ablative technique designed to resolve the neurovascular conflict responsible for typical idiopathic trigeminal neuralgia (TN).
Method: With the patient in a supine position, a small elliptical retrosigmoid craniectomy is used to approach the cerebellopontine angle and the trigeminal nerve. After careful exploration of the trigeminal root entry zone, the offending vessel is identified and moved away. Oxidized regenerated cellulose is used to keep the vessel in its new position far from the nerve.
Conclusion: MVD represents the gold standard first line treatment for TN; its aim is to free the nerve from any contact.