22 patients undergoing percutaneous microcompression of Gasserian ganglion for the treatment of trigeminal neuralgia were monitored intraoperatively by means of trigeminal evoked potentials (TEPs). The second trigeminal branch was stimu-lated at the maxillary foramen; evoked responses were recorded using subcutaneous electrodes placed over the scalp. TEPs presented several short-latency waves (called W1, W2, W3, P4, N5, P6, N10) which are generated before and after the ganglion (W1, W2, W3), in the brain stem (P4, N5, P6) and possibly in the cortex (N10); other waves occur within 150 ms after the stimulus (late waves). During compression, W1 did not change, while W2 and W3 as well as P4, N5, P6, N10 and late waves decreased in amplitude: this pattern was noted in the patients who presented with pain relief during the follow-up period. On the contrary, the patients who suffered from pain recurrence did not show similar intraoperative TEP changes. In conclusion, intraoperative TEP derangements may be related to the effectiveness of the compression on the Gasserian ganglion.

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