Vocal fold tear in an operatic tenor

September 17, 2014     Joel E. Portnoy, MD; Robert T. Sataloff, MD, DMA, FACS

The patient complained of increased throat clearing and coughing. He had experienced similar symptoms 3 months previously, which had resolved with voice rest.

Actinomycosis of the pharynx

September 17, 2014     Anna M. Lipowska, MD; Michael M. Johns III, MD


Few cases of pharyngeal actinomycosis have been documented in the literature. We describe the case of a 67-year-old white man who presented with symptoms of dysphagia. Laryngoscopy revealed a pedunculated mass in the left posterior pharyngeal wall; an excisional biopsy confirmed the diagnosis. Postoperatively, the patient underwent 10 weeks of intravenous penicillin therapy followed by 4 months of oral antibiotics, and his condition resolved. We discuss the diagnosis, management, and complications of this rare infection.

Cystic chondromalacia of the auricle treated with dual-plane excision with intracartilaginous dissection

September 17, 2014     Giovanni Zoccali, MD; Reza Pajand, MD; Nikolaos Vrentzos, MD; Maurizio Giuliani, MD


Cystic chondromalacia of the auricle is an uncommon condition in which a degenerative process occurs within the cartilage. The disorder affects young and middle-aged people. Clinically, it manifests as a painless, fluctuant swelling that frequently relapses despite various therapeutic approaches. In this article we report a typical case of cystic chondromalacia of the auricle that was successfully treated by surgery-specifically, dual-plane dissection-and we briefly review the literature.

Vertigo in elderly patients: A review of 164 cases in Brazil

August 27, 2014     Pedro Luiz Mangabeira Albernaz, MD, PhD


The author conducted a study to identify and categorize those vestibular disorders that were the most common among elderly patients at his private clinic over a 20-year period. He reviewed the records of 735 patients aged 65 to 90 years. The most common diagnosis was vertigo and/or disequilibrium, which occurred in 164 patients (22.3%). Of this group, 121 patients (73.8%) had a peripheral vestibular disorder and 43 (26.2%) had a central vestibular disorder. The characteristics of these cases are discussed.

A study of mucosal melanoma of the oral cavity in India: A rare tumor

August 27, 2014     Pankaj Chaturvedi, MS; Sandeep Lerra, MS(ENT); Piyush Gupta, MS; Prathamesh S. Pai, MS(ENT), DNB; Devendra A. Chaukar, MS, DNB; Jai Prakash Agarwal, MD; Anil K. D'Cruz, MS, DNB


Malignant melanomas involving the mucosa are rare and aggressive lesions. Their rarity has made the formulation of staging and treatment protocols very difficult, as most of the available information comes from case reports and small case series. We conducted a retrospective study to analyze the behavior of melanomas of the oral mucosa in patients who were treated at Tata Memorial Hospital in Mumbai, a tertiary care referral center for malignancies and one of the largest cancer centers on the Indian subcontinent. During the 22-year period from January 1986 through December 2007, we found only 13 such cases, which had occurred in 8 men and 5 women, aged 26 to 70 years (mean: 37.5). All patients had been offered surgery with curative intent. Mucosal melanomas have exhibited a greater tendency for distant recurrence than for local treatment failure, which is why adjuvant radiation therapy has not been shown to confer any consistent benefit. In our study, only 3 of the 13 patients (23.1%) remained alive 2 years after diagnosis, despite aggressive treatment. Tumor staging, optimal treatment, and prognostic factors for oral mucosal melanoma are far from clear, and further research is needed. Despite the small number of patients in this study, it still represents one of the largest series of oral mucosal melanoma patients in India.

In reference to “The value of resident presentations at scientific meetings”*

August 27, 2014     Jean Anderson Eloy, MD, FACS; Peter F. Svider, MD; Adam J. Folbe, MD; Michael Setzen, MD, FACS; Soly Baredes, MD, FACS

Regardless of what level of training one is at, we strongly agree with, support, and praise the editors' valuable point that supporting current trainees in scholarly pursuits is crucial for the continued advancement of our specialty

An unusual cause of dyspnea in a pregnant woman: Supraglottic hemangioma

August 27, 2014     Zehra Kurdoglu, MD; Mertihan Kurdoglu, MD; Hakan Cankaya, MD


Dyspnea is a common complaint among pregnant women; upper airway obstruction is a rare cause of it. We report a case of supraglottic hemangioma in a 20-year-old pregnant woman who presented with increasing dyspnea and hoarseness at 40 weeks of gestation. She gave birth to a healthy 3,100-g girl by caesarean delivery under epidural anesthesia. She was able to breathe easily during the postpartum period. This case represents a rare instance of dyspnea caused by a supraglottic hemangioma in a pregnant woman.

Arytenoid cartilage chondroma

August 27, 2014     Joel E. Portnoy, MD; Johnathan B. Sataloff; Mary J. Hawkshaw, BSN, RN, CORLN; Robert T. Sataloff, MD, DMA, FACS

Strobovideolaryngoscopy revealed a mass along the medial aspect of the left arytenoid cartilage.

Neopharyngeal diverticulum

August 27, 2014     Rebecca J. Howell, MD; Gregory N. Postma, MD

Endoscopic examination showed no distal stricture or cricopharyngeus muscle.

Transoral robotic surgery and oropharyngeal cancer: A literature review

August 27, 2014     Paraig O'Leary, MD; Thomas Kjaergaard, MD, PhD


The incidence of head and neck squamous cell carcinoma has risen steadily over the past decade due to the increase in cancers associated with the human papillomavirus (HPV). The prognosis for the treatment of this type of cancer with radiotherapy and chemoradiotherapy is good. However, because these treatments can have detrimental effects on organ function and quality of life, researchers are looking into transoral robotic surgery (TORS) as a possible alternate therapy. TORS might have a positive effect on postoperative function and quality of life for cancer survivors. The aim of this review is to report on the current situation regarding the treatment of oropharyngeal cancer with TORS, with a focus on the long-term oncologic and functional outcomes of this strategy. The articles cited in this review were selected from the PubMed and MEDLINE database. They contain study results pertaining to TORS implementation, complications, oncologic and functional outcomes, and the implications of HPV-associated cancer. We found that while TORS has some clear advantages and strengths and almost certainly a permanent place in future treatment, further research is necessary to correctly evaluate the role it will play in the complete management of oropharyngeal cancer.

Postoperative management in laryngeal cancer with subglottic extension and histologically negative nodes: Which patients need adjuvant radiotherapy?

August 27, 2014     Federico Ampil, MD; Cherie-Ann O. Nathan, MD; Timothy Lian, MD; Roxana Baluna, MD, PhD; Edward Milligan, MD; Gloria Caldito, PhD


We conducted a study of 19 patients who had laryngeal cancer with subglottic extension (LCSE) and pathologically negative lymph nodes (pN0) following total laryngectomy and neck dissection (TLND). These patients had undergone surgery during a 17-year period from 1986 through 2002. Of this group, 9 did not receive postoperative radiotherapy (non-RT group) and 10 did (RT group). Adjuvant irradiation had been administered to those with additional histopathologic risk factors for recurrence. We found that recurrence rates in the neck were 44% in the non-RT group and 11% in the RT group (1 of 9 evaluable patients), and the corresponding 5-year disease-free survival rates were 51 and 89%. While both of these differences were clinically significant, neither was statistically significant (p = 0.29 and p = 0.14, respectively). The presence of LCSE was not known prior to or during TLND in 4 non-RT patients and in 7 RT patients; their corresponding neck recurrence rates were 50 and 0%. Two of 8 patients (25%) whose ipsilateral lobe of the thyroid gland was not removed experienced a stomal recurrence. We conclude that three factors can be used to identify patients with pN0 LCSE who may be candidates for adjuvant postoperative radiotherapy: (1) a failure to remove the ipsilateral thyroid gland lobe during TLND, (2) a failure to examine the level VI lymph node for metastatic disease status, and (3) unfavorable histopathologic findings.

Saccular cyst as a complication of medialization laryngoplasty: A case report

August 27, 2014     Brent J. Benscoter, MD; Lee M. Akst, MD


We report the case of a 54-year-old woman who presented for evaluation of deterioration in her voice and swallowing function, which had begun after she had undergone a medialization laryngoplasty for unilateral vocal fold paralysis. Findings on examination and imaging revealed that a mass had developed adjacent to the Silastic implant that had been placed during the laryngoplasty. The superior extent of the implant reached above the laryngeal ventricle. Endolaryngeal surgical resection of the mass was accomplished without the need to remove the implant. Pathologic analysis identified the mass as a laryngeal saccular cyst. Although laryngeal saccular cysts are uncommon, medialization laryngoplasties are not. This case represents a rare complication of medialization laryngoplasty in which an implant compressed the laryngeal saccule and led to formation of the cyst.

Balloon sinus dilation in the office setting

August 27, 2014     Joseph P. Mirante, MD, FACS; Michael A. Munier, MD, FACS; Dewey A. Christmas Jr., MD; Eiji Yanagisawa, MD, FACS

The ability to complete operative procedures in the office setting avoids the time and cost of working in a hospital or outpatient surgical center operating room.

Laterality of sudden sensorineural hearing loss

August 27, 2014     Michael Reiss, MD; Gilfe Reiss, MD


It is known that sudden sensorineural hearing loss and other otoneurologic diseases, such as tinnitus or Ménière disease, occur more frequently in the left ear than in the right. We studied lateralization of sudden deafness in 489 patients treated at Radebeul Hospital from January 2004 to December 2009. The male-to-female ratio was 1:1.24; we found a predominance of the left side only in female patients. The cause for this predominance is unclear. The slight asymmetry might indicate a greater vulnerability of the left inner ear in women, suggesting hormonal factors in the genesis of sudden deafness.

Using a sternocleidomastoid muscle flap to prevent postoperative pharyngocutaneous fistula after total laryngectomy: A study of 88 cases

August 27, 2014     Masoud Naghibzadeh, MD; Ramin Zojaji, MD; Nematollah Mokhtari Amir Majdi, MD; Morteza Mazloum Farsi Baf, MD


Complications of total laryngectomy can have serious implications for the final outcome of treatment, including pharyngocutaneous fistula. We conducted a retrospective study of surgical techniques to determine how to best prevent or decrease the incidence of pharyngocutaneous fistula following total laryngectomy. We reviewed the hospital records of all patients who had undergone total laryngectomy for laryngeal carcinoma at Ghaem Hospital in Mashhad, Iran, from March 1989 through February 2005. We identified 88 such patients-80 men and 8 women. We divided this cohort into two groups according to the type of pharyngeal defect closure they received. A total of 37 patients-31 men and 6 women (mean age: 61.4 ± 5.9 yr) underwent primary closure along with a sternocleidomastoid muscle (SCMM) flap (flap group). The other 51 patients-49 men and 2 women (mean age: 61.3 ± 4.4 yr)-underwent standard primary closure without creation of an SCMM flap (nonflap group). Overall, postoperative pharyngocutaneous fistula occurred in 9 of the 88 patients (10.2%)-1 case in the flap group (2.7%) and 8 cases in the nonflap group (15.7%). The difference between the two groups was statistically significant (p < 0.001; odds ratio = 0.612, 95% confidence interval = 0.451 to 0.832), independent of other factors. We found no correlation between fistula development and age (p = 0.073), sex (p = 0.065), or tumor location (p = 0.435). Likewise, we found no correlation between tumor location and either sex (p = 0.140) or age (p = 0.241). We conclude that including an SCMM flap in the surgical process would significantly decrease the development of fistula, regardless of age, sex, and tumor site.

A study of adherence to the AAO-HNS "Clinical Practice Guideline: Adult Sinusitis"

August 27, 2014     Ilaaf Darrat, MD; Kathleen Yaremchuk, MD; Spencer Payne, MD; Michelle Nelson, MBA, CPC


A retrospective study was conducted to determine if physicians in otolaryngology practice adhered to the clinical practice guideline for adult sinusitis that had been issued by the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS) 3 years earlier. We analyzed data obtained from the charts of 90 adults who had presented to an otolaryngology outpatient department with a diagnosis of chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS), acute bacterial rhinosinusitis (ABRS), or acute viral rhinosinusitis (AVRS); there were 76 cases of CRS, 11 cases of ABRS, and 3 cases of AVRS. Our goal was to ascertain how closely the treating physician had adhered to the AAO-HNS recommendations with respect to diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of these diseases. The study group was made up of 10 otolaryngologists. We evaluated 7 clinical practice metrics for CRS, 7 metrics for ABRS, and 3 for AVRS. We found that individual physician adherence rates for cases of CRS ranged from 0 to 100%; average scores for the 7 metrics ranged from 4 to 88%. For cases of ABRS, adherence scores ranged from 0 to 100%; average scores for the 7 metrics ranged from 0 to 41%. For AVRS, the rate of adherence for all 3 metrics was 0%. This study revealed wide variations in adherence to the AAO-HNS guideline, but overall adherence was generally poor. Adherence appeared to be worse for the acute types of rhinosinusitis than for chronic rhinosinusitis. In view of these findings, a worksheet was developed that clinicians could use to improve compliance with the guidelines.

Resident editorial board members

August 27, 2014     Robert T. Sataloff, MD, DMA, FACS, Editor-in-Chief

We were not surprised by the fact that many of the residents' reviews were insightful and added valuable observations used in the decision-making process.

Paragangliomas of the head and neck: Imaging assessment

August 27, 2014     Alejandro Zuluaga, MD; Daniel Ocazionez, MD; Roy Riascos, MD; Enrique Palacios, MD; Carlos S. Restrepo, MD


Paragangliomas are uncommon tumors that arise from the parasympathetic neuroectodermal ganglionic cells and have been described in numerous anatomic locations, most commonly in the abdomen. Head and neck paragangliomas are classified into carotid body (most common), vagal, and jugulotympanic types. Computed tomography is the initial imaging modality of choice for the preoperative assessment of the extent of paragangliomas. Magnetic resonance imaging and selective angiography provide more detail of the surrounding tissues and vasculature. Surgical resection is the treatment of choice.

Fungal otitis externa as a cause of tympanic membrane perforation: A case series

August 27, 2014     James Eingun Song, MD; Thomas J. Haberkamp, MD; Riddhi Patel, MD; Miriam I. Redleaf, MD


We describe a series of 11 patients-8 men and 3 women, aged 18 to 70 years (mean: 46.0)-who had fungal otitis externa that had been complicated by a tympanic membrane perforation. These patients had been referred to us for evaluation of chronic, mostly treatment-refractory otitis externa, which had manifested as otorrhea, otalgia, and/or pruritus. Seven of the 11 patients had no history of ear problems prior to their current condition. Five patients had been referred to us by a primary care physician and 4 by an otolaryngologist; the other 2 patients were self-referred. All patients were treated with a thorough debridement of the ear and one of two antifungal medication regimens. Eight of the 11 patients experienced a complete resolution of signs and symptoms, including closure of the tympanic membrane perforation. The other 3 patients underwent either a tympanoplasty (n = 2) or a fat-graft myringotomy (n = 1) because the perforation did not close within a reasonable amount of time. This series demonstrates that the nonspecific signs and symptoms of fungal otitis externa can make diagnosis difficult for both primary care physicians and general otolaryngologists. This study also demonstrates that most cases of tympanic membrane perforation secondary to fungal otitis externa will resolve with cleaning of the ear and proper medical treatment. Therefore, most patients with this condition will not require surgery.

Two cases of pyogenic granuloma in pregnancy

August 27, 2014     Alex Fernandez, MS; Jason Hamilton, MD, FACS; Raphael Nach, MD

Management and treatment of rhinologic issues in pregnant patients can be complex because of the limited availability of safety data.

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