Hypocalcemia after minimally invasive thyroidectomy

September 17, 2014     Doug Massick, MD; Matthew R. Garrett, MD


We conducted a retrospective study to determine the incidence of postoperative hypocalcemia following minimally invasive thyroidectomy. During the 2-year study period, 74 patients-16 men and 58 women (mean age: 43.7)-underwent either total or hemithyroidectomy through a 3-cm incision. Postoperative hypocalcemia occurred in 14 of these patients (18.9%)-4 men and 10 women-all of whom underwent total rather than hemithyroidectomy. All these patients received supplementation with calcium and vitamin D for 2 weeks postoperatively in order to regain a normal calcium status, and all demonstrated normal serum calcium levels at 3 weeks. Despite their low calcium levels, none of the 14 patients exhibited any overt symptoms of hypocalcemia. We conclude that minimally invasive thyroidectomy is associated with a low rate of postoperative hypocalcemia that is comparable to the rates previously reported for standard thyroidectomy.

Mesenchymal chondrosarcoma of the mandible: A rare malignant tumor

September 17, 2014     Rakesh Kumar Singh, MS; Saurabh Varshney, MS; Sampan Singh Bist, MS; Meena Harsh, MD; Nitin Gupta, MD


Mesenchymal chondrosarcoma (MCHS) is a highly aggressive, malignant, cartilaginous tumor that represents about 1% of all chondrosarcomas. Only about 50 cases of MCHS of the jaw have been reported in the English-language literature; maxillary tumors are much more common than mandibular tumors. We present a new case of MCHS of the mandible that arose in a 22-year-old woman whose initial two biopsies did not reveal the features of the tumor. The diagnosis was made only after an incisional biopsy.

Ear mold impression material as an aural foreign body

September 17, 2014     Yu-Hsuan Lin, MD; Ming-Yee Lin, MD, PhD

Physicians should not rush indiscriminately into action without a careful otoscopic examination and a detailed history, to discern whether a patient has abnormal anatomy and is at risk for complications.

Chronic rhinosinusitis in patients requiring surgical repair of a midface fracture

September 17, 2014     Joshua C. Yelverton, MD; Peter Jackson, MD; Robert S. Schmidt, MD


Midface fractures commonly occur following trauma to the face and may cause changes in the normal sinus outflow system. To the best of our knowledge, no study has examined the incidence of rhinosinusitis following midface fractures. We report the incidence of chronic rhinosinusitis in patients who underwent surgical repair of a midface fracture. Our evaluation tool was the 20-item Sino-Nasal Outcome Test quality-of-life survey (SNOT-20). We mailed a demographic survey and the SNOT-20 questionnaire to 486 eligible patients who had undergone surgical repair of either a midface (n = 234) or mandible (n = 252) fracture; we had intended to use the latter cohort as a control group. Of the 234 midface patients, 34 (14.5%) returned a usable survey, but only 7 of the 252 mandibular patients (2.8%) did so, which was not a sufficient number for analysis; therefore we used normative data obtained from another study for comparison purposes. The mean SNOT-20 score in our cohort was 24.15, which was similar to the 28.7 mean score in the control cohort of patients with rhinosinusitis. The highest mean scores for the individual components of the SNOT-20 were for “Wake up at night,” “Lack of a good night's sleep,” “Wake up tired,” and “Frustrated/restless/irritable.” The components that the most patients found bothersome were “Facial pain/pressure,” “Need to blow nose,” “Runny nose,” and “Lack of a good night's sleep.” We conclude that patients who experience a midface fracture have a much higher risk of developing chronic rhinosinusitis that negatively affects their long-term quality of life. These patients should be monitored with long-term follow-up and treated appropriately.

Keratocystic odontogenic tumor

September 17, 2014     Lester D.R. Thompson, MD

Bite-wing or orthopantomograph images reveal a well-defined, unilocular radiolucency with a smooth border, showing minimal bone expansion and even cortication.

Stylohyoid syndrome, also known as Eagle syndrome: An uncommon cause of facial pain

September 17, 2014     Erin L. Werhun, MD; Mandy C. Weidenhaft, MD; Enrique Palacios, MD, FACR; Harold Neitzschman, MD, FACR

Eagle syndrome is often a diagnosis of exclusion after other etiologies of pain are thoroughly investigated, and it can be determined via a physical examination and characteristic radiographic findings.

Pedunculated cavernous hemangioma originating in the olfactory cleft

September 17, 2014     Kaiming Su, MD, PhD; Weitian Zhang, MD, PhD; Haibo Shi, MD, PhD; Shankai Yin, MD, PhD


Sinonasal cavernous hemangioma is a rare condition that usually affects the lateral wall of the nasal cavity. We report the case of a 77-year-old man who presented with severe epistaxis, nasal congestion, and olfactory dysfunction. Endoscopic examination of the nasal cavity revealed the presence of a red-blue tumor that had almost completely filled the nasopharynx. Preoperatively, it was difficult to distinguish this lesion from a juvenile nasopharyngeal angiofibroma. During endoscopic surgery, the tumor was found to originate in the left olfactory cleft, and it had a long peduncle that contained blood vessels. Postoperative histopathologic examination indicated that the mass was a cavernous hemangioma. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first case of an olfactory cleft cavernous hemangioma and the first case of olfactory cleft disease associated with a cavernous hemangioma to be reported in the English-language literature.

Report of a rare case of carcinoma arising in a branchial cyst

September 17, 2014     Natarajan Anantharajan, MBBS, MS, MRCS; Nagamuttu Ravindranathan, BDS, MBBS, FRCS(Edin)


Primary branchiogenic carcinoma is a rare condition. In fact, most of the cases that were previously reported as such were actually cystic metastases of oropharyngeal carcinomas. We report a true case of primary branchial cleft cyst carcinoma. Our patient was a 42-year-old woman who presented with a painless fluctuant swelling in the right side of her neck. The lesion was completely excised, and pathology identified it as a squamous cell carcinoma in a branchial cleft cyst. Patients with this condition require a careful evaluation of the entire head and neck region, especially the oropharynx, to look for any cystic metastasis of the primary tumor.

Cochlear fistula in a noncholesteatomatous ear

September 17, 2014     Yoav Hahn, MD; Dennis I. Bojrab, MD


Bony destruction of the labyrinth is usually associated with long-standing cholesteatomatous otitis media. The promontory is not a common site for bone resorption because (1) it is not an area that is involved in accumulation of cholesteatoma perimatrix substances, (2) it is the densest bone of the human body, and (3) pressure necrosis from overlying tissue is uncommon. We report a case of cochlear erosion associated with noncholesteatomatous middle ear disease. As far as we know, this is only the second such case reported in the literature. We also review decision-making factors and techniques for the safe management of this condition.

Plummer-Vinson syndrome following gastric bypass surgery

September 17, 2014     Andrew Sapthavee, MD; Matthew L. Kircher, MD; Lee M. Akst, MD


Plummer-Vinson syndrome (PVS) is the combination of dysphagia, angular cheilitis, atrophic glossitis, and esophageal webbing in the setting of iron deficiency anemia. Although it is relatively uncommon, this condition is important to recognize because it is a source of dysphagia and it confers an increased risk for hypopharyngeal cancer. Cases of PVS associated with gastrointestinal conditions such as celiac disease and gastric cancer have been previously reported in the literature, but as far as we know, no case of PVS associated with bariatric surgery has been previously reported. We describe the case of a 39-year-old woman who developed PVS following gastric bypass surgery, and we briefly discuss the current knowledge of this syndrome.

Bilateral nontuberculous mycobacterial middle ear infection: A rare case

September 17, 2014     Ing Ping Tang, MS; Shashinder Singh, MS; Raman Rajagopalan, MS


Nontuberculous Mycobacterium (NTM) middle ear infection is a rare cause of chronic bilateral intermittent otorrhea. We report a rare case of bilateral NTM middle ear infection in which a 55-year-old woman presented with intermittent otorrhea of 40 years' duration. The patient was treated medically with success. We conclude that NTM is a rare but probably under-recognized cause of chronic otitis media. A high index of suspicion is needed for the diagnosis to avoid prolonged morbidity. Treatment includes surgical clearance of infected tissue with appropriate antimycobacterial drugs, which are selected based on culture and sensitivity.

Solitary myofibroma of the oropharynx causing airway obstruction in an adult

September 17, 2014     Harrison W. Lin, MD; David Jung, MD, PhD; Linda N. Lee, MD; Peter M. Sadow, MD, PhD; James W. Rocco, MD, PhD


Myofibromas are benign neoplasms believed to be the most common fibrous proliferation of childhood. We present an unusual case of a 44-year-old woman who developed acute airway obstruction from a myofibroma in the oropharynx and accordingly required emergent tracheotomy tube placement. Serial laser excisions to adequately remove the entire lesion while maintaining pharyngeal structure and function were performed, and the patient was successfully decannulated. To date she has remained free of signs and symptoms of recurrence. Although rare in adults, solitary myofibromas should be considered in the differential diagnosis of any subcutaneous or submucosal head and neck lesion. Moreover, clinicians treating adult and pediatric patients with known solitary or multicentric forms of myofibroma should be aware of its potential for airway obstruction. Patients found to have a pharyngeal myofibroma should be managed with airway stabilization, surgical excision with preservation of speech and swallow function, and close postoperative monitoring for recurrence.

Lingual tonsil abscess with parapharyngeal extension: A case report

September 17, 2014     Andrew M. Coughlin, MD; Reginald F. Baugh, MD; Harold S. Pine, MD


Lingual tonsil abscess is a rare disorder previously reported only once in the English literature. Because of their similar structure to that of the palatine tonsils, the lingual tonsils have the propensity to develop infection in the same way. The progression of infection, however, is different in that the lingual tonsils lack a capsule, thus preventing the formation of a peritonsillar abscess. Therefore, the only place for infection to spread is either into the tongue or into the parapharyngeal space. Here we present our experience with the latter, and we provide radiographic evidence of the disease. Lingual tonsil abscess, although rare, is an important potential cause of airway obstruction and must be considered in the case of a sore throat with a normal oropharyngeal exam.

Second branchial cleft anomaly with an ectopic tooth: A case report

September 17, 2014     Jennifer C. Alyono, MD; Paul Hong, MD; Nathan C. Page, MD; Denise Malicki, MD, PhD; Marcella R. Bothwell, MD


Branchial cleft cysts, sinuses, and fistulas are the most common congenital lateral neck lesions in children. They arise as a result of an abnormal development of the branchial arches and their corresponding ectoderm-lined branchial clefts. Of these diverse anomalies, second branchial cleft lesions are the most common, accounting for approximately 95% of all branchial arch pathologies. We describe what is to the best of our knowledge the first reported case of an ectopic tooth in a branchial cleft anomaly. The patient was a young girl who had other congenital abnormalities and syndromic features and who was eventually diagnosed with Townes-Brocks syndrome. We describe the clinical presentation, management, pathologic analysis, and postoperative outcomes of this case, and we present a brief review of Townes-Brocks syndrome.

Role of the otolaryngologist in the management of asthma

September 17, 2014     Mahmoud Ghaderi, DO, FAOCO

[Editor's note: This Guest Editorial has been adapted with permission from its publication in the Fall 2012 issue of Soundings, the Pennsylvania Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery's newsletter.]

Mirror book therapy for the treatment of idiopathic facial palsy

September 17, 2014     Jodi Maron Barth, PT; Gincy L. Stezar, PTA; Gabriela C. Acierno, SPT; Thomas J. Kim, MD; Michael J. Reilly, MD


We conducted a retrospective chart review to determine the effectiveness of treating idiopathic facial palsy with mirror book therapy in conjunction with facial physical rehabilitation. We compared outcomes in 15 patients who underwent mirror book therapy in addition to standard therapy with those of 10 patients who underwent standard rehabilitation therapy without the mirror book. Before and after treatment, patients in both groups were rated according to the Facial Grading System (FGS), the Facial Disability Index-Physical (FDIP), and the Facial Disability Index-Social (FDIS). Patients in the mirror therapy group had a mean increase of 24.9 in FGS score, 22.0 in FDIP score, and 25.0 in FDIS score, all of which represented statistically significant improvements over their pretreatment scores. Those who did not receive mirror book therapy had mean increases of 20.8, 19.0, 14.6, respectively; these, too, represented significant improvements over baseline, and thus there was no statistically significant difference in improvement between the two groups. Nevertheless, our results show that patients who used mirror book therapy in addition to standard facial rehabilitation therapy experienced significant improvements in the treatment of idiopathic facial palsy. While further studies are necessary to determine if it has a definitive, statistically significant advantage over standard therapy, we recommend adding this therapy to the rehabilitation program in view of its ease of use, low cost, and lack of side effects.

A rare case of ameloblastic carcinoma

September 17, 2014     Michael Yunaev, MBBS; Muzib Abdul-Razak, FRCS(Edin); Hedley Coleman, FFOP(RCPA); Yaroslav Mayorchak, MBBS; Ian Kalnins, FRACS


Ameloblastic carcinoma is a rare type of ameloblastoma that has received little mention in the literature. While a number of cases have been published over many years, no institution has been able to produce a substantial case series. Ameloblastic carcinoma originates in the embryonic tooth components. It is believed to be an aggressive tumor that can metastasize; once metastasis occurs, the prognosis tends to be poor. Ameloblastic carcinoma is primarily a surgical condition that is best treated with resection; there has been little indication that other modalities are helpful. We present the case of a 40-year-old woman who was found to have a mandibular lesion by a dentist. After surgical resection, the tumor was found to be an ameloblastic carcinoma. The patient recovered without complication, and she was recurrence-free 18 months postoperatively. We also briefly review the available literature on the natural history of and management options for this rare tumor.

Comparative study of intranasal septal splints and nasal packs in patients undergoing nasal septal surgery

September 17, 2014     Raman Wadhera, MS; Naushad Zafar, MS; Sat Paul Gulati, MS; Vijay Kalra, MS; Anju Ghai, MD


We conducted a prospective, comparative, interventional study to evaluate the role of intranasal septal splints and to compare the results of this type of support with those of conventional nasal packing. Our study population was made up of 60 patients, aged 18 to 50 years, who had undergone septoplasty for the treatment of a symptomatic deviation of the nasal septum at our tertiary care referral hospital. These patients were randomly divided into two groups according to the type of nasal support they would receive: 30 patients (25 men and 5 women, mean age: 23.3 yr) received bilateral intranasal septal splints and the other 30 (26 men and 4 women, mean age: 22.4 yr) underwent anterior nasal packing. Outcomes parameters included postoperative pain and a number of other variables. At 24 and 48 hours postoperatively, the splint group had significantly lower mean pain scores (p < 0.05). At 48 hours, the splint group experienced significantly fewer instances of nasal bleeding (p < 0.01), swelling over the face and nose (p < 0.01), watering of the eyes (p < 0.01), nasal discharge (p = 0.028), nasal obstruction (p < 0.001), and feeding difficulty (p = 0.028). Likewise, mean pain scores during splint or pack removal were significantly lower in the splint group (p < 0.01). At the 6-week follow-up, only 2 patients (6.7%) in the splint group exhibited a residual deformity, compared with 8 patients (26.7%) in the packing group (p = 0.038). Finally, no patient in the splint group had an intranasal adhesion at follow-up, while 4 (13.3%) in the packing group did (p < 0.05). We conclude that intranasal septal splints result in less postoperative pain without increasing postoperative complications, and thus they can be used as an effective alternative to nasal packing after septoplasty.

Waldeyer ring lymphoma: A case series

September 17, 2014     Carren S.L. Teh, MBBS, MS(ORL-HNS); Pailoor Jayalakshmi, FRCPath; Sheldon Y.C. Chong, MBBS, MS(ORL-HNS)


We encountered a patient with a tongue base lymphoma that we initially diagnosed as a lingual tonsil in view of its benign appearance. We established the correct diagnosis of Waldeyer ring lymphoma by histology. This case led us to conduct a study of all cases of Waldeyer ring lymphoma that had been treated at our center during a 10-year period. We retrospectively examined our case records and found 35 such cases. From this group, we excluded 5 cases because of incomplete data. Thus our final study group was made up of 30 patients-14 males and 16 females, aged 14 to 76 years (mean: 51.6; median 54). The primary presenting signs and symptoms were dysphagia (n = 17 [57%]), a neck mass (n = 7 [23%]), nasal symptoms (n = 5 [17%]), and pain (n = 1 [3%]). Only 4 patients (13%) had B symptoms. A total of 20 patients (67%) presented with tonsillar involvement, 8 (27%) with nasopharyngeal involvement, 1 (3%) with tongue base lymphoma, and 1 with anterior tongue involvement. Most patients (77%) presented at an early stage. Histologically, 25 patients (83%) had high-grade diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, 4 (13%) had T-cell lymphoblastic lymphoma, and 1 (3%) had follicular lymphoma. Twenty-one patients (70%) were treated with chemotherapy, 4 (13%) received adjuvant chemotherapy with either radiotherapy or surgery, 3 (10%) resorted to other forms of treatment (primarily traditional remedies), and 2 (7%) declined treatment altogether. There were 14 patients (47%) alive at the end of the study period.

Focal hyperostosis of an intranasal inverted papilloma observed on computed tomography

September 17, 2014     Jae-Hoon Lee, MD; Ha-Min Jeong, MD

Precise preoperative identification of the tumor origin is as important as detecting the extent of tumor invasion.

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